‘Tiger King’: Joe Exotic Wants To Help Find Carole Baskin’s Missing Husband
A lot has happened on the Tiger King front since its Netflix debut in March. The docuseries featured zookeeper Joseph Maldonado-Passage (aka Joe Exotic) and Big Cat Rescue owner Carole Baskin’s rivalry. The twisted antagonism opened the portal to the case of Baskin’s missing husband, Jack Donald “Don” Lewis. She denied having any involvement. Now, Maldonado-Passage wants to help the Lewis family.
Carole Baskin hit with a lawsuit following Lewis family press conference
On Aug. 10, the family of Carole Baskin’s missing millionaire husband hosted a press conference to cover plans moving forward. Along with a $100,000 reward offered for information regarding Lewis’s case, they’ve placed four billboards around Tampa, Florida.
The Lewis family attorney, John Phillips, reignited the investigation into the cold case and filed a lawsuit against Baskin so she will testify on the record. Lewis vanished in 1997 and declared “dead” in 2002. The former co-owner of Baskin’ rescue left behind a reported $5 million in assets.
Tiger King revealed details surrounding the case. Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister hired experts to decipher Lewis’s will in June, but it could not be verified.
Entertainment Weekly reported that the will appeared to be forged. Baskin’s attainment of the rescue and estate may not hold up if forced to testify in a courtroom.
‘Joe Exotic’ offered his help
With news of the Lewis family’s press conference, along with a private memorial in Lewis’s honor, Maldonado-Passage said he wants to help. “Joe Exotic” is currently in federal prison serving a 22-year prison sentence for a murder-for-hire plot against Baskin.
According to TMZ, Maldonado-Passage reached out to the Lewis family following the conference with information from “his own investigations” regarding Baskin.
The family is interested in hearing what the “TigerKing” has to say. However, Phillips will have to vet him first. As for Baskin, she didn’t see cause for concern at the time but has since stated she will not comment on n open litigation.
“I believe it is a publicity stunt orchestrated by (family spokesman) Jack Smith to bolster his YouTube views but do hope that all of the attention from Tiger King and the aftermath will result in us finding Don,” Baskin previously told WFLA.
It’s unclear if, or how, Maldonado-Passage can contribute to the case past anything already revealed in the Netflix docuseries. In the meantime, he’s been awaiting news from the president.
President Trump teased pardon for ‘very important person’ but it wasn’t ‘Joe Exotic’
When President Donald J. Trump announced his plans to pardon a “very very important person,” he added it wouldn’t be whistleblower Edward Snowden or former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
Naturally, the next logical guess is that of Maldonado-Passage who petitioned for a pardon in April. When asked whether it could happen, the president claimed not to know enough about the situation.
Past pardons include Dinesh D’Souza and former-United States Army First Lieutenant Michael Behenna. On Aug. 18, Susan B. Anthony received the pardon — not Maldonado-Passage.
On the bright side, now “Joe Exotic” has more time to help the Lewis family ahead of Tiger King Season 2.