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Carole Baskin Claims Ex-Husband Is Alive, Police Say Otherwise

Carole Baskin

An interview from 2021 has recently resurfaced online, circulating claims made by Baskin that the Department of Homeland Security had located her ex-husband's whereabouts.

Carole Baskin has claimed that her former husband, Don Lewis, is "alive and well" in Costa Rica.


An interview from 2021 has recently resurfaced online, circulating claims made by Baskin that the Department of Homeland Security had located her ex-husband's whereabouts.

"They said my husband, Don Lewis, is alive and well in Costa Rica," she told This Morning at the time. "And yet all of this drama has been made about me having something to do with his disappearance, when Homeland Security has known where he is."

Baskin also alleged that she requested documentation of Lewis' location, but did not say whether or not she received it.

"When [Tiger King 2 producers] presented a letter that looks to be from Homeland Security saying that Don was alive and well five years after I saw him the last time," Baskin explained. "I reached out to the FBI and said I want a copy of that letter. I want to know what that says because part of it was redacted, and I don't know who the people involved were."

Nearly two years later, Baskin is standing by the comments from her interview. In fact, she said that was was surprised by the video's circulation online, as she believed it to be common knowledge.

"I've mentioned it in the more than 60 interviews I've done since then, where reporters asked about Don, so I'm surprised everyone in the press is acting like they aren't aware of it," Baskin told People. "I was not aware of the Homeland Security document saying Don was alive and well in Costa Rica until [Tiger King 2] aired in November 2021."

However, after the interview went viral, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office released their own statement via The New York Post confirming that there is still a missing persons investigation open for Lewis.

"We have not received any communication from our federal partners that confirms the location of missing person Mr. Don Lewis," they said. "The investigation into Don Lewis' disappearance remains a priority for the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, as do all missing person cases."

Baskin has been under media speculation for involvement in her husband's disappearance, a conspiracy theory largely popularized by Tiger King subject, Joe Exotic. The private zoo owner's feud with Baskin, who founded a sanctuary for big cats, was well documented throughout the series, and eventually led to criminal charges against Exotic, who has been in prison since 2019.

Baskin has continuously denied involvement in Lewis' disappearance.

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