‘Tiger King’ Brings New Interest To Hillsborough Cold Case
Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister hopes a popular Netflix series will help solve the disappearance of Don Lewis.
Lewis’ story is featured in Tiger King, a limited-run series that delves into the cutthroat world of exotic animal rescue.
Lewis co-founded Big Cat Rescue with wife Carole. He disappeared in August 1997. The only trace of him found was his van, parked at a private airport in Pasco County.
Investigators suspected he fled to Costa Rica, where he owned a wilderness park, but searches in that country turned up nothing. Lewis was declared dead in 2002.
Chronister says the show is bringing new interest to the case, and he’s assigned a detective to sort through new leads.
“Maybe someone has had a change of heart,” he said. “Maybe a relationship status has changed. Anything that will prompt someone to call with a legitimate lead a piece of evidence.” Chronister says none of the leads so far have been credible, but he hopes that changes as more people watch the show.