Carole Baskin Calls ‘Justice for Don’ Commercial a ‘Publicity Stunt’

Tiger King made Carole Baskin more of a household name. But now she’s hoping Dancing with the Stars will change public opinion of her. Her missing husband’s family aired a commercial against her during the premiere. Baskin gave her opinion on the move and more.

Carole Baskin is at odds with Don Lewis’ family

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Lewis disappeared in 1997 and Tiger King covered the rumors around his disappearance. Joseph Allen Maldonado-Passage, also known as Joe Exotic, accused Baskin of killing her husband and feeding him to tigers. But there is no evidence of this.

Lewis’ family also appeared in the series. His daughters were suspicious of Baskin, who later addressed this in a blog post.

“The claim the girls made in the series that I picked the assets they got and that they were bad assets is nonsense,” Baskin wrote. “They got the assets from the trust they were beneficiaries of, worth $1 million.”

She also said she was disappointed in the series focusing on these rumors instead of the breeding of big cats and cub exploitation. “As part of that, it has a segment devoted to suggesting, with lies and innuendos from people who are not credible, that I had a role in the disappearance of my husband Don 21 years ago,” read the post.

His family aired a commercial

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Lewis’ family paid for a commercial to air during the premiere of Dancing with the Stars. His daughters, Gale, Lynda and Donna starred in the commercial. His former assistant, Anne also appeared saying they want justice.

“Don Lewis disappeared in 1997. His family deserves answers. They deserve justice. Do you know who did this or if Carole Baskin was involved?” asked John M. Phillips, the family’s attorney.

There is a $100,000 reward to find him. A tip hotline was also plugged in the commercial.

She called it a publicity stunt

Carole Baskin and Pasha Pashkov of 'Dancing with the Stars'
Carole Baskin and Pasha Pashkov of ‘Dancing with the Stars’ | Kelsey McNeal/ABC via Getty Images

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Baskin gave her reaction to the commercial. She claims to not be surprised by it.

“I have not seen the ad. I am not at all surprised,” she told Entertainment Tonight. “It’s just been a huge publicity stunt on their part so what more could they possibly do than that?”

She also had a message for those who hate her but are keeping tabs on what she’s doing. “Spending time worrying about what I’m doing is probably not a really good use of your time,” Baskin said. “I’m not worried about what people say because even when they’re saying things that [are] negative, it’s keeping the conversation out there [about cats] in the public eye. As long as I can keep that conversation out there, I can keep the cats in the spotlight and that’s my goal.”