Another misfortune has befallen Joe Exotic.
The sequel to the wild (and wildly popular) Netflix docuseries is around the corner, but Joe — real name Joseph Maldonado-Passage — preempted the premiere with a bombshell of his own. As you may recall, in 2020 the zookeeper was sentenced to 22 years in prison for two separate murder-for-hire plots and a variety of wildlife violations. Since being imprisoned, he has been put in coronavirus quarantine, gotten divorced, and been diagnosed with cancer.
The television personality first shared his diagnosis back in May; on Wednesday, he gave fans an update via a handwritten letter that was posted on his Instagram. The note read:
“Everyone, It is with a sad face that I have to tell you the doctors called me in today to break the news that my prostate biopsy came back with an aggressive cancer, I am still waiting on the results from other test as well.”
Of course, Joe couldn’t resist dragging his rival Carole Baskin (whom, we should add, he was convicted of trying to have killed) into the situation. He wrote:
“Right now I don’t want anyone’s pity and I’m sure Carole Will have her own party over this!”
Returning to his own situation, the 58-year-old continued:
“What I need is the world to be my voice to be released, they have the proof I DID NOT DO THIS! And there is no reason for the district attorney to drag this out, So I can go home and get treatment on my own or enjoy what life I have left with my loved ones!”
“Say a prayer everyone & be my voice love #joeexotic”
A post shared by Joe Exotic (@joe_exotic)
Joe’s attorney, John Phillips, also addressed his client’s health crisis on Twitter:
“I can and will publicly confirm Joe’s cancer. He and I spoke Monday with both of us in tears at a point. He needs freedom by so many definitions and we are diligent working towards that. #TigerKing2 #FreeJoeExotic #justiceforjoeexotic #fcancer”
When the embattled animal lover first revealed his diagnosis in May 2021, he opened up on social media:
“John Phillips has received my medical records from FMC Fort Worth, and my PSA count came back very high for prostate cancer. The prison has approved testing to verify what stage it is in. My body is tired, I have lost a tremendous amount of weight, the mouth sores are out of control, I throw up more than I eat.”
Joe has frequently called on the President (both Donald Trump and Joe Biden) to pardon him, as well as appealing to other high profile officials. So far, nothing has changed his circumstances, although in July the court ordered he be re-sentenced (without overturning his conviction).
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