Tiger King star found dead at 53
Erik Cowie, star of Tiger King has died aged 53.
The zookeeper’s body was found “face down in a bedroom of a residence” in New York on Friday. Sources say there is nothing suspicious about the death at this point and no drugs were found on the scene, though a toxicology test will likely still be performed” according to TMZ reports.
Erik appeared on the Netflix reality series as one of Joe Exotic’s eccentric animal caretakers. After Joe was imprisoned, Cowie stayed and took care of the big at the GW zoo.
He later went on to testify against former boss Joe Exotic who is currently serving a 22-year prison sentence after allegedly trying to hire two hitmen to kill business rival, Carole Baskin.
Erik Cowie’s death comes four months after he was arrested driving under the influence following a car accident in the US. Allegedly the Netflix star had been drink-driving when he crashed into another vehicle.
In 2020 Carole Baskin’s Big Cat Rescue was awarded complete control over GW Zoo as part of the settlement in her long-standing lawsuit against Exotic. Carole went on to sell the Oklahoma property with one of the provisions being the land cannot be used as a zoo for 100 years.
In a statement released from prison, Exotic suggested Erik Cowie succumbed to a drug and alcohol addiction. “I did everything I could to help him and save him from himself and he turned on me for fame. And Money” he wrote.
“RIP Erik. I will be making a donation in his name to a drug and alcohol treatment centre”.
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