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'Tiger King' Star Joe Exotic Had Stretch Limo Waiting Outside His Prison For Trump Pardon That Never Came

Tiger King/Netflix

Back in March 2020, when the pandemic first hit the United States, people across the country were confused, anxious and stuck at home for long periods of time.

So the March 20, 2020 release of Netflix's Tiger King, a documentary series that followed the wild antics and eventual imprisonment of eccentric big cat zookeeper "Joe Exotic," gave countless frightened people at least a few hours to place their thoughts in what felt like a different universe (it was actually Oklahoma).

Now, 10 months and 400,000 virus deaths later, "Joe Exotic"—whose real name is Joe Maldonado-Passage—grabbed headlines once again.

This time, Maldonado-Passage trended across social media when a gaudy stretch limousine was seen waiting outside his lawyer's office.

Maldonado-Passage is being held for 22-years on charges related to a murder-for-hire plot and federal wildlife laws, CBS reported.

On Donald Trump's last day as President of the United States, rumors were flying about exactly who the lame duck president was planning to pardon in the eleventh hour of his reality show presidency.

Clearly, Maldonado-Passage and his legal team were feeling quite confident they were on the list of Trump pardons, which ultimately included Lil Wayne, Steve Bannon and dozens of others.

Maldonado-Passage's confidence may have come from his feeling he managed to convince the President with a handwritten letter he sent back in September.

That two-page letter included a direct plea for clemency:

"Allow me to make you proud, to make America proud, to make the world proud. Be my hero please."
When people on Twitter saw the limo outside the prison, their imaginations went wild.




But Maldonado-Passage was never granted the pardon he and his legal team so confidently expected.

As President Donald Trump kissed his presidency goodbye, fellow reality TV star Joe Exotic remained locked up.

Again, Twitter went wild.




With the Trump presidency now behind us, Joe Exotic's legal avenues toward freedom appear to be growing thin.