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About the Zanesville Tragedy

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What Really Happened in Zanesville Ohio Where Terry Thompson and his Many Exotic Animals were Killed by Local Law Enforcement.

Joe Schreibvogel, president of the United States Zoological Association, tells reporters that he believes Terry Thompson, the owner of the exotic animals in the Zanesville incident, did not commit suicide but was murdered as part of a conspiracy to implement a ban on the private ownership of wild animals in the state.

Despite hundreds of interviews and even more investigations by the media, no one can say for sure what drove Terry Thompson to do what he did. There were alleged marital problems, outside attention on his private Jumanji, and some possible money trouble. What resulted from all or none of that was the dangerous and selfish actions of a suicidal man.

Joe Exotic takes you to the Thompson farm in Zanesville Ohio and gives you in depth details and some inside information.


Joe Schreibvogel doesn't think so. He thinks someone — and that's as specific as he gets — saw Terry Thompson and his 73-acre farm as the perfect rallying point to swing public opinion toward an exotic animal ban.


But the more he talks, the more Schreibvogel thinks it might be something else altogether.

"I've gotten anonymous letters in the mail with leads," he says. "They go into telling me of multiple deaths — Terry's one of them — and about people wanting Terry's property for fracking. They get all the way down to knowing who the snitch was telling them everything that Terry did, and it implicates the sheriff's department and a former FBI agent. So I don't know yet whether it was to further the agenda or for his land."

Joe Exotic declines to name the other men supposedly killed, the former agent, or who would want to steal Thompson's property. But he does have plenty to say about why Zanesville doesn't add up.

Among his concerns: the cages had been cut, not opened with keys; a worker on site was only gone for a little over an hour, not long enough for events to occur as authorities describe them; chicken blood was found around Thompson's body, but no bucket used to carry the chicken blood was found; the gun Thompson used to shoot himself had been bought from a sheriff's deputy, but no one has been prosecuted for selling Thompson the gun; and leopards were left in their cages, something only someone with keen knowledge of animals and leopards' reputation as being the most dangerous big cats would know.

"He had keys, so why would he cut the cages?" he asks. "And as an animal lover and someone who would have died for those animals, why would he cut the cages apart knowing the animals were going to be slaughtered?


The United States Zoological Association has "united" animal lovers in over 57 Foreign Countries.

The purpose of this organization is to support and unite the commercial zoos, breeders, private owners, and sanctuaries into a networking program to further educate each other and create professionalism within the animal industry. This will give us the credibility we need to work strongly with the lawmakers, to further their education about the exotic and alternative animal owners, and show them we can be responsible and professional.

Through conservation, education and outreach we can conserve endangered animals in both captivity and in the wild and help raise awareness of the dangers to wild habitats that may lead to the extinction of some species. Find Out More at the USZA Website


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