Writing From the Future With Evidence From 1996-1997
I am writing this on 12/18/2020 because I have been researching all of the files from 1996-1997 involving Don Lewis. I have placed it here, on the day of his disappearance, because all of it transpired prior to this day, and in some cases, where documents are not dated, I don’t have a better guess. I think this will explain the last thing Don Lewis apparently said to Kenny Farr, which was, “If I pull this off, it will be the slickest thing I ever did!”
This story goes a long way back, but it’s pretty interesting and gives great insight as to the kind of persons that Don and Joe were and what was happening right as Don disappeared. To the best of what I can find in my files and online, Don and I bought 11509 Sligh Avenue, Tampa, FL on 7/18/90 at a foreclosure or tax deed sale. It had been a cock fighting ring and Don wanted me to convert it to a women’s mud wrastlin’ [sic] pit. I refused and Don sold it on a lease option to Joe Ryan. (Joseph George Ryan SS# 436) On 5/31/1994 Lazy Days RV Center, Inc., brought suit against Don and Joe for specific performance in case 94-CA-003672 for the sale of this property.
The following is based on what Don told me and some of the evidence I have found, including Joe Ryan’s deposition in 98-7799-F where he sued the Conservatorship for more money after already having been paid $70,000 for a property he never owned, to settle the Lazy Days case. Don sold the property to Joe Ryan on a lease option whereby Joe would pay $5000. of the taxes on the property and a monthly lease fee and if he made 12 on time we would deed the property to him and take back a mortgage. Joe Ryan’s depo says he was buying it from us for $50,600.00 on time.
We already knew Joe Ryan wasn’t good for his word because he had a similar agreement with Don on the “Seffner farm” property where Don had carved out a parcel and on the lake and Joe was building his dream home, but fell on hard times financially and never got past the inner studs of the house inside its shell. We took that property back and the house was later demolished in 2006 by the new owners who turned the Seffner farm into a subdivision.
Lazy Days wanted to build their huge RV center in the area and sent out scouts to buy up the little lots without letting anyone know who the real buyer was to keep the prices low. They offered Joe more money than he owed us so he signed an agreement to sell to them at a price of $60k, I believe, based on Joe Ryan’s deposition. After agreeing to the sale amount by contract, Joe Ryan discovered the buyer was Lazy Days and Joe thought he could get a lot more for the property if he could get Don Lewis to nix the deal by showing what was true: Joe Ryan didn’t own the property yet because he had not been making his payments and was in default.
Don then apparently went to Lazy Days and offered to sell it to them for $225,000.00 but he told Joe Ryan that he only got $131,000.00 from it so he wouldn’t have to honor his agreement (which the deposition implies was signed by Anne McQueen, not Don, but Joe Ryan said Anne signed Don’s name all the time on things) to give Joe Ryan everything above $60,000.00 that he would get from the sale. The way Don was scheming to do this without Joe Ryan knowing what the real sales price had been was to sell the property to WITCO which was a corporation Don set up in Costa Rica. Then WITCO would do the transaction with Lazy Days after Joe Ryan thought the property had changed hands and he was getting the excess proceeds based on what he said Don had told him and Anne had signed with him.
The way Don was getting $94,000.00 more than what Joe Ryan knew about was that Don had written into the agreement with Lazy Days that in addition to the $131