‘Tiger King’ reptile dealer dies by apparent suicide in front of wife

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(WJW) — A reptile dealer who made an appearance on the Netflix hit, “Tiger King,” has died by suicide.

People reports that Jeff Johnson, 58, died on Sept. 8 following an argument with his wife. According to Oklahoma City Police documents, Johnson shot himself in front of his wife, People reports. His children were also home at the time.

Johnson appeared in the fourth episode of the first season of “Tiger King.”

Just five days prior to Johnson’s death, “Tiger King” zookeeper Erik Cowie died at the age of 54. He was found facedown in a New York City residence. No foul play was suspected.

Cowie had stayed on at the Oklahoma tiger zoo even after its former owner Joe Exotic was put in prison. However, the space is now closed to the public. Cowie had admitted to having a drinking problem before being on the “Tiger King” series.

Exotic was sentenced in January 2020 to 22 years in federal prison after being convicted of trying to hire two different men to kill Florida animal rights activist Carole Baskin. He was recently transferred to a medical facility in North Carolina for federal inmates after a cancer diagnosis, according to his attorney.

 If you or someone you know might be at risk of suicide, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

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