Details on Don Lewis' Disappearance from Netflix Show "Tiger King"

23 years after Don Lewis disappears, Netflix documentary "Tiger King" prompts police to reopen the cold case.

Details on Don Lewis' Disappearance from Netflix Show "Tiger King"

Wildly popular Netflix true crime documentary Tiger King brings to light a feud between animal rights activist Carole Baskin and 'Tiger King' Joe Exotic. Baskin tried for years to shut down Exotic’s big-cat zoo for animal rights violations. Exotic eventually retailated by accusing Baskin of murdering her late-husband who supposedly disappered. Baskin’s wealthy husband, Don Lewis, went missing 23 years ago. Many suspect that he was murdered and that Baskin was somehow involved. Because of the Tiger King series, Lewis’ case has been reopened by local police and new tips have been coming in.

During his appearance on The Dr. Oz Show on Apr. 23, 2020, Sheriff Chad Chronister told Dr. Oz he believes the incident was a homicide and thinks the attention the case received through the popular Netflix series will help solve the cold case. Here is a definitive timeline of the facts regarding the case, as well as instructions on how to submit any relevant information to the police.

AUGUST 19, 1997

Carole Baskin reports her husband, Don Lewis, missing.

AUGUST 20, 1997

Don’s van is found at the Pilot Country Airport in Springhill, Florida. There are no witnesses or records of him leaving the country.


Don is declared dead five years after he vanishes.

If you have any information regarding the disappearance of Don Lewis, please notify the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office at (813) 247-8200.

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