Baskin Awarded Tiger King’s Zoo, Sheriff Says her Husband’s Murder Paid Hit


A federal judge has awarded Tiger King Joe Exotic’s Zoo to Carole Baskin, but a Florida Sheriff still believes her husband’s murder was “extremely planned out” with more than one person was involved – a paid accomplice.

Carole Baskin gets Tiger King’s zoo as part of lawsuit

The control of the zoo formerly belonging to currently imprisoned ‘Tiger King’ Joe Exotic has been awarded to Carole Baskin by a federal judge as part of a one-million-dollar ruling in a trademark dispute.

The judge’s order will give control to Baskin of roughly 16 acres of land in Garvin County, Oklahoma, which is home to an animal park that contains a variety of big cats.

Prior to the ruling, the zoo was owned and operated by Greater Wynnewood Development Group, LLC (GWDC), which Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Allen Maldonado-Passage, previously owned. It now becomes the property of Carole Baskin’s Big Cat Rescue Corporation.

Under the court order, GWDC must “vacate the Zoo Land premises within 120 days of service of this Order. Vacation of premises shall also require removal of all zoo animals from the Zoo Land.”

According to court records, in addition to control of the zoo, the word also grants several cabins and vehicles to Baskin, CNN reported.

Sheriff believes more than one person involved in paid murder of Baskin’s husband

The sheriff of Hillsborough County, Florida, Sheriff Chad Chronister, believes that the long-missing husband of Carole Baskin was murdered and that more than one person was involved. He believes that a paid accomplice was involved in helping whoever murdered Baskin’s husband.

Baskin’s husband was Jack “Don” Lewis. The 60-year-old millionaire mysteriously vanished on August 18, 1997.

“This had to be extremely planned out,” Sheriff Chronister told TMZ. “This had to be well thought out. There’s someone else involved in this.”

“There’s someone who was paid to do it,” Chronister alleges. “There’s someone who helped do it. I’m hoping that person wants to come and get this off their chest and help law enforcement do the right thing.”

What happened to Baskin’s husband?

One of the allegations implied during the Netflix series Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness, was that Baskin may have fed her husband to the big cats, something Exotic implicitly accused Baskin of doing.

Back in 1998, during an interview with People, Donna Pettus, the oldest of Lewis for children, made the startling claim that Baskin feeding her father to the big cats would be “a perfect scenario to dispose of someone.”

It has been 33 years since anyone has seen Jack Donald Lewis alive. At the time, Lewis, a white male, was 48 years old, stood five foot ten inches tall and weighed 170 pounds.

Anyone with any information is urged to contact the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s office at 813-247-8200.