|“||For twelve years, I've studied these men after they were caught. Now I want to catch them.||”|
— Tara in "The Job"
Dr. Tara Elizabeth Lewis is an FBI forensic psychologist and Supervisory Special Agent who first appears in Season Eleven of Criminal Minds as a recurring character. She joined the BAU following the departure of Kate Callahan at the end of Season Ten. She reappeared in Season Twelve as a main character.
As a child, Lewis had to travel around the world because of her father Albert's service in the U.S. Army. She also had a mother who died of breast cancer and a brother named Gabriel. As a child, she and her family moved to Germany. There, she was harassed by a bully named Martin Gumbel, who made fun of her name and drew a swastika on her locker. When Gabriel reported it to the school administration, Gumbel and his friends sought revenge by beating him up. As a result of the incident, Lewis admired her brother for always standing up for her while he started calling her "T".
As an adult, she had high intelligence alongside Gabriel, though Gabriel forsakes it in favor of getting rich, while she went to Dartmouth College. Lewis eventually had to help Gabriel through the aftermath of one of his scams and tried to get him to change his ways, but her efforts were unsuccessful, leading to an estrangement between the two. At some point during her collegiate years, she was briefly married to Daryl Wright when she was a professor and he a graduate student. He began taking pills, thus causing a change in behavior for the worst and their ultimate separate. Later, She joined the FBI as a forensic psychologist, who extensively interviews a number of psychopathic criminals to determine whether they were fit for trial or not. Through her job, she has seen a number of depraved minds up close and personal. Before joining the BAU, she came from the San Francisco FBI field office. More recently, she was engaged to a man named Doug Fuller, which caused her some personal distress after other women began flirting with him.however he dumped her when she proved incapable of handling their relationship and the wedding and went back to Seattle where he was from
In "Mirror Image", Gabriel is abducted by Peter Lewis, who brainwashes a man named Desmond Holt to take Gabriel's place. Upon realizing this, Lewis is able to profile where Gabriel is located and saves him, narrowly escaping Peter's trap in the process.
In the season finale "Red Light", the team gets a new lead on Peter's current location. However, their SUVs were disabled by spike-strips and struck by a semi-truck.
In the adjacent episode, "Wheels Up," the SUV Lewis was in took most of the impact, and as a result, she nearly went into shock. Despite this, she witnessed Scratch drugged Prentiss before abducting her.
In "Broken Wing", it is revealed that her ex-husband, Daryl Wright, is a former alcoholic. His alcoholism put a strain on their marriage, ultimately ending it. She later uses this information to help Prentiss talk down the episode's unsub.
- Her sidearm is a Glock 19. However, she was seen using a SIG Sauer P226R in one episode, which she used to shoot and kill an unsub.
- She interviewed Loren Herzog, one of the Speed Freak Killers. ("The Job")
- She interviewed Archie Sutton, a.k.a. "The Truck Stop Strangler", an infamous serial killer whose mother was coincidentally the elementary school classmate of Lewis's own mother. ("The Witness")
- Her father Albert owns an auto repair shop and taught her how to repair old cars. ("Drive")
- She is the same blood type as Savannah Hayes. ("A Beautiful Disaster")
- She speaks German ("Devil's Backbone") and French. ("The Storm")
- She was present in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting and provided counseling to the parents of the shooter's victims. She also saw the victims' bodies, which severely traumatized her. ("False Flag")