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The controversial couple who took over the zoo featured in the hit Netflix series “Tiger King” were arrested in Oklahoma over the weekend for driving under the influence, according to police.
Jeff Lowe, 56, and Lauren Lowe, 30, were arrested in Oklahoma City in the early hours of Saturday for DUIs, according to the Oklahoma City Police Department online jail records; Jeff Lowe was also charged with changing lanes improperly after they were pulled over by police in their Range Rover.
Police spotted a white Range Rover pulling out of a lot and then driving over a curb, before then abruptly stopping, according to a police report of the incident obtained by People. At that point, police say Lauren Lowe then allegedly moved from the driver's seat, switching places with her husband in the passenger’s seat.
Jeff Lowe then took over driving and made an illegal lane change before pulling over, police said. Both had slurred speech and "a strong odor commonly associated with the consumption of an alcoholic beverage" on their breaths, the report says, according to the outlet, and Jeff Lowe had an "unsteadiness on his feet and his inability to follow the directions."
A breathalyzer test found that Jeff Lowe’s blood-alcohol level was 0.18, according to police; that is more than double the legal limit to be operating a motor vehicle.
Police records indicate that Jeff Lowe bonded out around 3:15 p.m. on Saturday and Lauren Lowe was released on bond around 7:30 p.m. Each paid bail of $750, while he paid another $172 for the moving violation. It is unclear when either will appear in court.
In May, multiple protected lions, tigers, lion-tiger hybrids, and a jaguar were seized from the zoo in Thackerville, Oklahoma, as part of an investigation into Endangered Species Act violations.
In November, it was announced that both are being sued by the Department of Justice for alleged animal abuse. In a federal complaint filed in civil court, it was claimed that the couple is responsible for "recurring inhumane treatment and improper handling" of big cats at Joe Exotic’s former zoo, the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park.
The couple had been operating the park until August when Jeff Lowe claimed he forfeited his Department of Agriculture exhibitors license; the USDA, however, said it had suspended the license after finding multiple animal welfare violations.
Big cat activist and Exotic’s foil Carole Baskin was awarded ownership of that park earlier this summer.
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