Critical ‘Tiger King’ Character Is From Michigan
If you gutted it out through all seven episodes of the 'Tiger King' documentary on Netflix, you know who was the biggest heel on the show. Yeah, he's from Michigan. CAUTION: **SPOILERS COMING**
While watching the soul sucking documentary, I remember thinking when the random investor, Jeff Lowe, showed up on the scene, 'we all knew a dude like that in high school.'
Now I know why.
The Lansing State Journal reports that Lowe, the mysterious 'millionaire' who swooped in and bought Joe Exotic out of his wild animal park in Oklahoma originally hails from DeWitt, Michigan.
According to the article, Jeff was featured in an article in the paper way back in 1966 when his mom thought he swallowed a staple at an office supply store. It turns out, he didn't.
After graduating from Eastern High School in Lansing in 1981, Lowe found his way to St. John's, where his love for big cats got him into trouble:
In 1988...Lowe's cougar, Rambo, escaped and killed a neighbor's collie near St. Johns. The Clinton County Sheriff's Office ended up shooting and killing the 150-pound cougar with Lowe's permission, according to a newspaper article.
"He could have been let out or he could have busted out," Lowe told the State Journal. "He had always been very content to stay in that cage."
This started a series of incidents with big cats, including a male lion named 'Rajah', who Jeff claimed was the reason his neighbors were constantly calling the cops.
I could kind of see why they might.
At the time, Lowe told a reporter he didn't have a permanent cage for the 325-pound lion, which he described as gentle. He blamed area residents for objecting to his choice of pet.
"We thought we had moved far enough into the country to avoid neighbor problems, but St. Johns people are too set in their ways," Lowe said prior to a planning commission hearing.
Here's a photo gallery of all the newspaper articles written about Jeff in the Lansing State Journal. It never does reveal how Jeff made his money. it couldn't have been something illegal, could it?