Family of missing ex-husband of Carole Baskin to hold press conference Aug. 10

Hillsborough County

HCSO

(WFLA) – The family of missing Jack “Don” Lewis, the former husband of Big Cat Rescue CEO Carole Baskin, announced Saturday they will be holding a press conference in August.

Jack Smith, who goes by the name “RipperJack Media,” sent News Channel 8 an email detailing the press conference that will be held on Aug. 10.

Smith has been following the disappearance of Lewis for months and documenting his findings on his YouTube channel.

On July 6, an interview with Lewis’ three daughters was posted to the channel.

“The family will make a few announcements regarding the case of Don Lewis, who was reported missing by Carole Baskin (Lewis) in August of 1997,” the email reads.

8 On Your Side’s Daisy Ruth reached out to Carole Baskin and Big Cat Rescue and received the following statement:

“I do not plan to attend.  I believe it is a publicity stunt orchestrated by 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 sent a document with questions for the Tiger King cast, including Anne McQueen, Lewis’ former assistant, and his daughters.

At the end of March, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister asked for new leads in the case of Lewis.

The case was brought back to the spotlight in the Netflix documentary series “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness,” with some, including Baskins’ arch-nemesis Joseph Maldonado-Passage, also known as Joe Exotic, speculating Baskin had something to do in the disappearance of Lewis.

Lewis’ remains have yet to be found.

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