Tiger King star Dillon Passage was arrested in the early hours of Sunday morning for driving while intoxicated, according to a report by TMZ. Passage was picked up in Travis County, Texas shortly after 3 a.m. local time." Passage, the young husband of Joe Exotic, apparently spent Saturday night out at a party despite rising coronavirus cases.
Police reportedly stopped Passage for errant driving in Texas after a long night of partying. He was given a field sobriety test and failed, so police handcuffed him and took him to jail. Public records show that Passage was booked just after 5:30 a.m. and charged with misdemeanor driving while intoxicated (DWI.) While it did not factor into the Netflix documentary, Exotic has said that Passage's drinking concerns him in interviews since he gained national fame.
"I've tried my hardest to get him to quit drinking; I love him," Exotic told TMZ. The reality star is still in prison, serving a 22-year sentence for murder for hire after paying a zoo worker to try to kill his rival, conservationist Carole Baskin.
Passage appeared in later episodes of Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness after Exotic's previous partner, Travis Maldonado, passed away. The show depicts Exotic's controversial relationship with Maldonado, with employees' suspicion of drug use and deception behind the scenes. It then documents Maldonado's death by accidentally shooting himself and Exotic's intense public grief. Finally, in the final three episodes, Passage enters the picture as Exotic's new boyfriend and, before long, his husband.
Passage's Instagram Story from Saturday night shows one video he took of himself at what looked like a crowded dance club or bar, with loud music blaring and multi-colored lights illuminating the crowded space. He smiled as he panned around the room, showing a drink in his hand and a female friend dancing beside him. Beyond that, he did not comment about his night.
According to TMZ, Passage is still behind bars on Sunday, either because he couldn't pay bail or because it wasn't offered. The woman he was with on Saturday night has made her Instagram account private, so there are no other clues to what he was up to before his arrest.
Passage has remained publicly supportive of Exotic even as he was sentenced to more than two decades in jail. Passage has expressed hope that an appeal or even a presidential pardon could get him out from behind bars like Exotic himself. So far, there is no sign of that happening.