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'Tiger King' has shocked Netflix viewers since its release, but the main question everyone's walking away with isn't about Joe Exotic, but Carole Baskin.

Here’s why the internet thinks Carole Baskin killed her husband

Reason one: Because she did.

Netflix’s Tiger King has set the interwebs ablaze by just how outlandish and ridiculous every minute is. Somehow, the person the show is about (Joe Exotic) isn’t the craziest one on the show. 

The entire cast of colorful personalities on Tiger King all has their dark secrets that play into the story of Joe Exotic’s downfall. But no story is any darker than Carole Baskin and her missing husband. While Kate McKinnon is taking on the story in a dramatic light, people are still asking questions about Don Lewis’s disappearance. 

In case all these names are foreign to you and you managed to miss Tiger King in your quarantine bubble, let’s recap. Joe Exotic was an exotic animal zoo owner/black market animal dealer, who was arrested in 2018 for animal abuse at the zoo, as well as a murder for hire scheme. Who did Joe try to kill? Carole.

'Tiger King' has shocked Netflix viewers since its release, but the main question everyone's walking away with isn't about Joe Exotic, but Carole Baskin.

What the heck does Carole’s husband have to do with this?

As part of Tiger King, all the players in Exotic’s story were sat down and interviewed for the docuseries. Naturally, Carole Baskin was also asked to participate, and agreed. As the leader of the charge against Exotic and his zoo, Baskin and her group Big Cat Rescue constantly attacked Exotic and his treatment of animals. 

But a big part of their feud that escalated it to attempted murder was Baskin’s second husband, Don Lewis. The two married in 1991, but in 1997, Lewis mysteriously disappeared without even a note. While on record, Lewis was declared legally dead in 2002, he was never found.

Naturally, everyone looks to their spouse when people disappear. No charges were set against Baskin for Lewis’s disappearance, but that didn’t stop Exotic from constantly accusing Baskin of murdering her husband. 

What evidence points to Baskin as a murderer?

In the months leading up to his disappearance, Lewis made it clear he was interested in moving to Costa Rica. He was always flying on a regular basis for his sex addiction anyway. He followed these claims up by transferring ownership of his Florida properties to his Costa Rican company.

But the really convincing claims are the restraining order against Baskin Lewis attempted to file, as well as his desire to divorce Baskin. Baskin and Lewis got together while they were cheating on their respective spouses, so Lewis was known to be unfaithful. Plus, Big Cat employees noted Baskin was very skeptical of people.

'Tiger King' has shocked Netflix viewers since its release, but the main question everyone's walking away with isn't about Joe Exotic, but Carole Baskin.

A new door opens

Like many police departments before them, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office took the newfound publicity from Tiger King to reinvigorate the case of Lewis’s disappearance. The case was never officially closed to begin with, so it was easy for the department to hop right back into the investigation.

But of course, this led the internet to start assuming there’s a new development thanks to the show and that’s why they reopened the case. Now the web’s top Twitter detectives are trying to solve Lewis’s disappearance to help the Hillsborough County police. 

The police denied at first that Lewis was killed, and feel this is either him running away with no word, or him being kidnapped. But internet detectives are willing to prove the opposite to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. 

'Tiger King' has shocked Netflix viewers since its release, but the main question everyone's walking away with isn't about Joe Exotic, but Carole Baskin.

Carole Baskin’s ‘Tiger King’ has shocked Netflix viewers since its release, but the main question everyone’s walking away with isn’t about Joe Exotic, but Carole Baskin.

Not so innocent himself

But Lewis was far from a good man himself. Since Tiger King‘s release, Baskin has released an article on the Big Cat Rescue website painting a clearer picture of what happened. The piece entitled Refuting Netflix Tiger King paints Lewis as an abusive husband who no one should pity. 

She paints Lewis in his later years as a man losing his mind through Alzhiemers disease, constantly buying junk that he wants to fix up, but forget about. As he would take his escapades to Costa Rica, she spent the weekends trying to dump as much of the trash as possible. 

His anger about her getting rid of his stuff is what motivated the restraining order he was denied for in June. Lewis left that with his assistant that was fired for embezzling money from Big Cat Rescue, who then didn’t bring it up until three weeks after Lewis’ disappearance. 

'Tiger King' has shocked Netflix viewers since its release, but the main question everyone's walking away with isn't about Joe Exotic, but Carole Baskin.

An ex-wife gold digger

In Tiger King, Lewis’ ex-wife and children do anything but talk highly of Baskin. Of course, Lewis was cheating for years on Gladys before Baskin came into the picture, but that doesn’t make for good TV. As the main proprietors of the “ground up and fed to tigers” theory, Baskin says their greed for Lewis’ fortune is what led them to spread such lies. 

When Lewis and Gladys Lewis Cross got divorced in 1989, Lewis let her and her children handpick the properties, as well as give cars, cash, jewelry, and coins in the divorce proceedings. But her oldest daughter managed to lose her portion thanks to bad stock market decisions within only a few years. 

With the green-eyed monster under her skin and a hatred for Baskin, Cross filed a lawsuit in 1996 saying she should’ve gotten more in their agreement. After this, Lewis told Baskin to take them off the PRSL trust as beneficiaries, but she didn’t want him to change his mind in the future, and left them on. But Lewis didn’t say another word to any of them again. 

'Tiger King' has shocked Netflix viewers since its release, but the main question everyone's walking away with isn't about Joe Exotic, but Carole Baskin.

More than one killer

Of course, as Baskin has pleaded her case of innocence, police are still looking for answers to where Lewis’ body is. Since there’s no body, police are still almost 100% convinced that he was killed. But they think he wasn’t killed by just one person. 

Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a TMZ interview that this wasn’t just one killer, but at least two. “This had to be well thought out. There’s someone else involved in this. There’s someone who was paid to do it. There’s someone who helped do it.”

It would definitely be ironic if Baskin was involved in her own murder-for-hire scheme. Plus it makes sense that to properly hide Lewis and keep quiet, it would need to be at least a two man job. But there’s no suspects yet as to who that second person could be, unless it was just someone paid for this one hitman job. 

'Tiger King' has shocked Netflix viewers since its release, but the main question everyone's walking away with isn't about Joe Exotic, but Carole Baskin.

Plus, police have said that there’s not enough evidence against Baskin. It’s not surprising. The private detective Baskin hired in 1998 had nothing but nice things to say about her, and at least in the police’s eyes, she did everything she could to try and help find Lewis. 

Maybe Netflix just wanted to paint another villain with Carole Baskin, and overdramatized the story of Lewis’ disappearance. Unfortunately, with 20 years passed since the man disappeared, it’s hard to know if Lewis’ body will ever be recovered. 

We hope the truth does come to light though. Whether Baskin killed her husband or it was someone else, we want the guilty party to confess and give peace to his case. Heck, if Lewis is alive drinking margaritas in Costa Rica, hopefully he’ll show himself and put an end to these claims.

Curious about the other cast members on Tiger King? We were too, which was why we wrote a whole piece about them – check it out here.

If you’re addicted to Netflix true crime docuseries like Tiger King, sign up for our newsletter. We promise only the most relevant news, quizzes, articles, and poles in your inbox. If you’re looking to browse Netflix internationally we love Surfshack VPN for flawless streaming,

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Comments
  • Joe deserved prison, Carol might have killed her husband but no one actually knows they are just assuming because for some crazy reason they are siding with Joe. Don’t start an article with “because she did” when it’s not a fact but a theory.

    April 13, 2020
    • Shut up. She did

      April 14, 2020
      • true

        April 23, 2020
      • ITS JOE

        May 12, 2020
      • I don’t got nothing to say about this.But the Carol Baskin song was funny it’s one of my favorite songs now

        June 3, 2020
      • It’s Joe!

        June 3, 2020
      • I believe Joe because a lot of woman either want to or did kill their husbands

        June 3, 2020
      • No one has proof she did it so quit judging people with out facts it’s not right I was acused of scratching my ex when he did it to himself I spent 30 days in jail for something I did not do so I know how she feels if you don’t have proof then shut up and mind you own business you did not live her life you don’t know her so don’t judge her and don’t acuse her

        September 14, 2020
    • You can’t say it’s a theory yet. As of now it’s a hypothesis.

      April 15, 2020
      • how is it a theory when she actually did it though?

        April 22, 2020
      • She did kill her husband

        Probably fed him to tigers

        May 11, 2020
      • she fed him to tigers

        May 17, 2020
    • Lol. Dude. Facts are clear with Carol. This is a good thing that they are investigating her. Does not mean everyone is siding with Joe.

      April 19, 2020
    • Oh yeah then how come that damn Carole baskins REFUSE to take a polygraph?!! Why worry if there isnt anything to hide…look it up

      April 22, 2020
      • True

        May 18, 2020
      • Polygraphs are fake science and inadmissible in court. I’d say nope too

        May 21, 2020
      • Carol Baskin killed her husband whacked him can’t convince me that it didn’t happen fed him to tigers they snacking what’s happening Carol Baskin ~meh potato

        July 24, 2020
    • The reason the internet sides with Joe is bc he’s a dude. That’s it. The only reason. And the reason the internet doesn’t believe Carole is bc she’s a woman. That’s it. The only reason.

      April 25, 2020
      • Reeeeeeeee

        May 21, 2020
      • Lmao. You’re dumb. The only reason you’re dumb is because your’e dumb. That’s it. The only reason.

        May 24, 2020
      • it doesnt matter if shes a women or a man she did it every one knows

        June 6, 2020
      • So you are calling millions of people sexist 😬

        June 10, 2020
    • You seem right but itś also hard to even believe anyone that might even be wrong.

      May 2, 2020
      • What if joe was trying to kill carole but first he killed her husband so he wouldnt get joe in trouble

        May 31, 2020
    • It’s true she did kill her husband.

      “Carole Baskin killed her husband whacked him can’t convince me that that didn’t happen fed him to the tiger he snackin” –

      Logan Pau;

      May 18, 2020
    • Siding with Joe??? Not at all, but she clearly lied (contradicting herself from a taped interview) that her husband flew to Costa Rico ( he always flew commercial) and there was a weird incident the night he disappeared – walking around at 3 a.m. for Tiger milk at a store that closed at 9 p.m. Her cop brother conveniently finds her – the brother she dismissed that was too young for her to know ( six years apart – sure). There was written documents from the victim detailing his fear of her…watch her cackling response to serious questions. Should she be arrested – at this point no but if the police did their job 23 years ago, maybe they should have. Look at the circumstantial evidence that was used to convict Scott Peterson….hope they find something but there is zero chance they can get a confession from her at this point.

      May 19, 2020
    • Nobody is siding with Joe we all understand he is a horrible person but people have a natural sense to worry and people cant understand the concept of a internet persona meaning they aren’t as connected to people as they may believe and since they don’t want to admit that they act like they are directly in involved in peoples business and since they are still wanting entertainment they try to start stuff for the sake of laughs and giggles

      May 24, 2020
      • Punctuation is a beautiful thing….

        May 28, 2020
    • heres what i think. i think joe hired someone to kill her because joe knew she killed don and wanted revenge. i think carole out of spite teamed up with his ex wife and maybe even the child who lost her cut of his items decided to kill him with a tiger. i think they did this because he had a love for tigers and wanted him to die by one. i wish there was a way to legally force someone to take a polygraph test and if there is they need one for carol, dons ex wife, and some of carol and his ex wifes children. i truly believe if carol baskin didnt do it she knew what did happen. my other theory is that carol and his ex wife set him up, they sent him to get tiger milk and had hired someone to be there to end his life. they might have even went as far as to burn his body but i dont really think they wouldve had the time. but what goes on in the dark shows up in the light whether its in 10 days or 10 years eventually the truth will come out.

      May 26, 2020
      • That’s a good thought

        June 22, 2020
    • How about you just enjoy the article

      May 27, 2020
    • I dont think thats how the author meant it, but a figure of speech for whats being said

      May 28, 2020
    • Of course it is impossible he went to one of those islands and got caught molesting a young woman and was killed there by an angry father.

      June 1, 2020
    • Or maybe the angry daughter killed dear old dad to incriminate Baskin so she could sue for the money? Nah, kids never do that for money. Do they?

      June 1, 2020
    • Agreed. So tired of click bait, and false accusations.

      June 6, 2020
    • She doesn’t have any remorse or felling about him missing!! Why? If he divorced her she would be on streets yet again. Gold digger

      June 12, 2020
    • 🙄

      June 16, 2020
    • Oh my god man, did you even see the documentary and the interviews? She literally makes several references what you’d need to kill someone using cats. The fake story makes no sense, she says her husband flew with the small plane to costa rica, he’d need to make 4 stops to refuel like that, in an older interview she says he went from Miami(which is the commercial airport), and in one of the latest she says he went from the small airport with the small airplane. She also said she went to a grocery store(AT 3 AM) to buy milk. She didn’t return in the same vehicle but instead in a police car from a deputy thats friend’s with her brother(also deputy). WHAT THE FUCK IS ACTUALLY GOING ON BURN THIS BITCH

      June 19, 2020
    • Joe is right carol did
      And the only reason the body is not found is because she fed the body to the tigers then hurried the bones deep underground and they can’t find it cuz the second person is probably a person that works in Big Cat rescue

      July 1, 2020
    • Carol Baskin, who’s askin?

      July 24, 2020
  • Everyone on the show was a nut job, and Carole is just as bad as the rest. Occam’s Razor applies here, her killing her husband is the likely reason he’s gone. Obviously, total speculation on my part, but from what’s been shown on various shows, it seems far more likely than not that she killed him or paid someone to kill him. Fortunately for all of us, “more than likely” isn’t enough to convict. But more than likely certainly applies in the court of public opinion.

    April 14, 2020
    • Maybe it was the person who got fired for embezzlement

      May 10, 2020
    • It also could have been an accident. So to speak something happened to him while he was in a lack of better terminology at the moment, Alzheimer’s episode and died, since his mind would have been in an altered state. Some Alzheimer patients die in accidents due to their altered states of mind and memories.

      June 6, 2020
  • She makes people work for her for free. She capt animals in the cages. How she is better then Joe? I wouldn’t trust her.

    April 14, 2020
    • how do you think she keeps hold of the animals they would run away if there were no cages duh!!!!!!

      May 20, 2020
  • She clearly killed her husband

    April 15, 2020
    • You have to prove how you know if she did or didn´t kill her husband/ex husband.

      May 2, 2020
    • i didn’t kill my husband

      June 14, 2020
  • She made her husband dissapear and had people higher up to just look past it. There was no investigation into her doing shady stuff because of her connections maybe even allegedly “she is the caretaker” when it really was the man doing the job. Now just look what she have done to Joe.

    April 16, 2020
    • You are so right

      May 2, 2020
  • Nathan, or should I say Carol. The article didn’t start off with “because she did.” Take your meds (but avoid ketamine, you drugged your husband with that).

    April 17, 2020
    • “Reason one: Because she did.”

      If your gonna say something at least take 2 seconds to scroll back up. Baskins totally killed her husband but its still very likely that it might not be the case

      April 21, 2020
      • We dont know what happened yet so stop blaming people till the case is solved!

        May 30, 2020
    • Here’s why the internet thinks Carole Baskin killed her husband
      Reason one: Because she did.

      copy pasted right from the article

      May 11, 2020
  • Joe was flamboyant, white trashy and just plain weird, but Carol makes my skin crawl. Every fiber of my being says she’s a murderer. And I can’t see any difference between her and Joe in that they both make money off of animals that should be in the wild. This woman and her mealy mouthed husband are my ideal of evil and stupid, respectively. She gives me the creeps. No proof, but this isn’t a court of law; it’s my opinion.

    April 17, 2020
  • Did Carole receive significantly more money by having him murdered than by divorcing him? Did they have a Pre-Nup agreement that limited her “take home pay” if they divorced? The answers to those two questions would be very valuable info, looking for a money motive !

    April 20, 2020
  • I think carol vasket is a fake ass butch that killed don. U shiuld Rot in hell. Th am god u doing your new pet husband another Scumbag. God I hope I get busted. Pos

    April 24, 2020
    • I agree with Steve

      June 3, 2020
  • Carole Baskin Killed Her Husband, Whacked Him, Cannot Convince me that it didnt happen, Fed Him to tigers, they snackin, thats wassup

    May 7, 2020
  • I fed him to the cats

    May 10, 2020
    • You sure about that

      June 3, 2020
    • If this is Carol Baskin who just commented,you just said that you fed him to tigers!

      June 3, 2020
    • Is this really Carol Baskin who just commented!!!?

      June 3, 2020
  • I dont blame her shes cool

    May 10, 2020
  • Lol Carole Baskin Killed her Husband WACKED HIM can’t convince me that it didn’t happen😂

    May 10, 2020
  • I don’t think CB killed her husband herself. But she knows something about her ex-husband’s missing. That’s for sure.

    Plus, she took her ex-husband’s fortune more than she deserve.

    May 10, 2020
    • I killed my husband because Im evil and I like money. The statute of limitations is up so deal with it people. Leave me and my twink hubby alone!

      June 14, 2020
      • wow carol…really? it was that easy? I think you are WRONG. I have seen many murder shows where several years later murders were solved and the prosecuted the perp. Sooo, don’t be too sure of yourself!! Just saying.

        September 18, 2020
  • Right under the title the article starts with: “Reason one: Because she did.”,
    Not saying she didn’t, but maybe you are the one that needs meds.
    You’re innocent until proven guilty ? Or guilty until proven innocent ?

    May 11, 2020
  • Carole probably did kill her husband

    What if she fed him to the tigers?

    May 11, 2020
    • she fed him to tigers for sure

      May 27, 2020
  • Too bad her husband didn’t get the restraining order 🤷🏼‍♀️

    May 13, 2020
  • She did it

    May 21, 2020
  • This is such a joke. I have followed many missing persons cases over the years and there have been people arrested and convicted on less evidence without ever recovering a body!! The legal system is corrupt and this is a huge cover up
    She did it without any question and she is so manipulative!! I cannot believe the amount of blind ignorant people out there! Such a huge shame!!! No wonder no one trusts the law or judicial system.

    May 24, 2020
  • Carole Baskin killed her husband, whacked him.
    Can’t convince me that it didn’t happen.
    Fed him to tigers, they snackin’
    What’s happenin’ Carole Baskin

    May 27, 2020
  • Look out second husband she gonna kill u she got away with her first good luck dud or maybe u helped her lol

    May 27, 2020
  • That is just sexest women have more rights that men these days miby that fact Joe’s in prison and carol got away with murder proves that

    May 30, 2020
  • When I started watching this TV series, I was so indulged that I finished all the episodes in 2 days! I wonder if anyone could recommend a similar TV series to this one? Btw all recommendations are welcome, even if it’s not a Netflix original and I can’t find amongst the content in my country server, I can always change to any other with the help of Surfshark VPN. Can’t wait to hear some suggestions!

    June 11, 2020
  • Heeeheeehe-hahaha was her response for everything on the show!!! Gives me the creeps…let’s convince ourselves we’re telling the truth…………..👍

    June 11, 2020
  • Everyone in that docuseries was sketchy, with maybe one or two exceptions. Carole was not one of those exceptions. There was a moment, after Joe got busted, and Carole was talking about the hit on her life, that she looked disappointed that the hit wasn’t a success. Almost like she wanted to die. She said her cause would have gotten so much attention, some twisted martyrdom, but I believe there is some underlying remorse in that woman. I think she feels she deserves such a fate.
    I just read that Don’s will was forged, but the statute of limitations prevented any convictions. What?!?! Ok, she definitely played a part. The whole document should be void. The fact that she made off with his fortune is just despairing.
    Bottom line, Don was afraid of Carole. He tried filing a restraining order against her, but was denied because his fears were diminished to hearsay. Apparently, someone threatening to end your life is only problematic if they say it out loud in front of a few hundred witnesses, otherwise it’s hearsay. Even if they follow through on the threat….hearsay.
    He also filed for divorce. Don wanted her out of his life, so she took his life from him. A lot of opinions and hypothesis going around, here’s mine;
    I think she did threaten to kill him. I think while Don was trying to find a way out of his marriage, Carole was plotting her own scheme. I think he told her he was done, he may have even presented her with the divorce papers, and Carole snapped. I think it was partly premeditated, but mostly a crime of passion. Carole was about to lose her livelihood, fear is a powerful motivator, a butt load of money sweetens the pot. I then think Carole called upon her brother, and he helped dispose of the evidence. Being a cop, he would know how to get away with it. He would know the ins and outs of the law, what detectives look for. I think he did the brotherly thing and protected his sister. He used his influence to make it go away. Press the brother, that’s my two bits.

    July 2, 2020
  • Joe was crazy and deserved Jail. He committed so many criminal and unethical acts, outside of what he got charged for and didn’t get arrested for those.

    But, so does Carole. She’s just smarter about it.

    August 4, 2020
  • Is it not pure facts that she killed her husband, I mean he did do some horrible things but it doesn’t deserve death especially by tigers

    September 10, 2020
  • also I’d like to add.. she has like 20 people working for her that aren’t that loyal.. she would have to sit around for hours or days for them to clean the bones and then go throughand collect them all and magically make them disappear. The tigers make sounds when they are being fed.. idk.. your pitchforks don’t make a lot of sense to me

    September 15, 2020
  • I watched Tiger King and this is my opinion. Only an opinion okay?
    I didn’t like the way Joe lived or the way he acted about Carol however looking at his side of it and her side of it…..he had a lot of good points about Carol one was selling tickets to see her attraction, which seemed like hypocrisy to me… She was basically doing the same thing Joe was doing only she wasn’t breeding cats and as far as joe… should never have acted out scenes of murdering her though! Saw that on netflix. It was truly hate on both sides of the fence going at each other, Joe I noticed was the worst.

    As far as carol and her missing hubby….my conclusion was she had lots of motives to kill him and one was money! through the years, a bunch of murders happened as motives are over money!!
    I believe if carol’s husband was sipping margaritas on a beach somewhere he would have sold everything and took his money with him….just my thoughts about it ! I feel she probably did kill her husband and I hope and pray they find out who did it, if it wasn’t her!

    September 18, 2020

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