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Duane Lee "Dog" Chapman (born February 2, 1953 in Denver, Coloradomarker ) is an Americanmarker bounty hunter, a former bail bondsman. He stars in Dog the Bounty Hunter, a weekly reality television program which is broadcast on the A&E Network (USAmarker), Virgin 1 (both UKmarker and Irelandmarker), Bravo, and FOX8/GO! (Australia). Duane Chapman used to be an amateur boxer in his teens and early 20's, going by the name "Dog Lee", taken from his nickname and middle name.


Duane Chapman was born in Denver, Coloradomarker. He dropped out of his elementary school in the seventh grade. According to his book, he walked into his principal's office and said "Fuck you. You never stuck up for me when you knew I was getting beaten at home. You never believed a word I said. I quit!"

Duane Chapman used to be an amateur boxer in his teens, going by the name "Dog Lee", taken from his nickname and middle name. Dog still enjoys weight training, as evidenced by the Bosco episode, during which Dog's workout regimen is featured.

In 1977 Chapman was sentenced to 5 years in prison and was remanded to Huntsville prison in Huntsville, Texas. He served 18 months of that 5 year sentence for the murder of Jerry Oliver in Pampa, Texas. Chapman maintains his innocence of murder but suggests he was a legal accessory for not reporting the shooting to the police. He was released on parole after serving 18 months in Huntsville Prisonmarker in Huntsville, Texasmarker. Two of his co-defendants received probation and a third, their alleged shooter, received ten years in prison.

In 2006, he married his fifth wife, Beth Smith, on his television show in Hawaii. They were together for ten years before they married.

Duane Lee "Dog" Chapman also as a hobby studies Native American History.

Bounty hunting

Chapman's career in bounty hunting began when he was in court disputing child support. When he told the judge he did not have the money to pay, the judge offered him a deal to bring in a fugitive in exchange for the judge to pay part of Chapman's child support for Duane Lee and Leland Chapman.He started his first bondsman business in his hometown of Denver, Coloradomarker before moving to Hawaiimarker with five of his children: Leland Chapman, Duane Lee Chapman, Tucker, Baby Lyssa and Barbara Kate. After his mother's death, he moved back to Colorado for a long stay to work alongside his sister, Jolene Chapman, who also started her own bail bond business on 'Bail Bond's Row'. Duane Chapman and his wife Alice Barmore (now known as Beth Chapman) soon joined with him on his bounties and business. Both moved back to Hawaii to open up another office in downtown Honolulu. This business has been extended to within Hawaii to the Big Islandmarker and Mauimarker. He has arrested more than 6,000 people.

Arrest by Mexican government

On June 18, 2003, Chapman made news with his hunt and capture of Max Factor cosmetics heir Andrew Luster, who at the time was in Puerto Vallartamarker, Mexicomarker. Luster had fled the United States in the middle of his trial for drugging and raping a number of women, and was convicted in absentia on 86 counts including multiple rape charges connected to assaults in 1996, 1997 and 2000. Chapman was assisted by his "hunt team", consisting of his son Leland and his associate, Tim Chapman . After Luster's jailing, Duane Chapman was interviewed for a documentary which was published on 2009 August 28 by Dominick Dunne on Power, Privilege, and Justice broadcast via the TruTV network.

On September 14, 2006, days prior to the expiration of the statute of limitations, Chapman, along with his son Leland Chapman and associate Tim Chapman, were arrested by United States Marshals and jailed in Honolulu on behalf of the Mexican government. Mexican authorities had charged all three with deprivation of liberty, involving the 2003 apprehension of Andrew Luster, because they had not handed Luster over to them. After not obtaining permission to leave the country in 2003, the Mexican Government declared Duane, Leleand and Tim Chapman, fugitives from justice and tried to get them extradited to Mexico for sentencing. After spending one night in the federal detention center in Honolulu, Chapman told reporters: "The federal marshals treated us with great respect. But let me tell you, you never want to go to a federal prison, because it's terrible."

The next day, September 15, 2006, Chapman appeared in a packed Honolulu courtroom with his ankles shackled. Although the judge agreed that the men were not a flight risk, he ordered that each wear an electronic monitoring device around the ankle.  The three men were released on bail ($300,000 for Duane Chapman, $100,000 each for Leland Chapman and Tim Chapman). They were also ordered to wear an electronic ankle bracelet for house arrest.

Beth Chapman was detained and had a hearing after she was caught wearing an A&E body microphone when entering the courthouse for their bond hearing; electronic recording devices are prohibited by law from being carried into federal courthouses. She was released after explaining that she "didn't know they had the mic and transmitter"; the judge was satisfied that no recording was done.

Chapman was fighting extradition in September 2006. His lead attorney Brook Hart reportedly planned to argue that although the charge Chapman faced is a misdemeanor in Mexico, when translated into English it became a felony (kidnapping) under American law. An extradition hearing was set for November 16, 2006, where both sides were to present evidence and witnesses. Chapman has speculated that his arrest was due in part to a possible prisoner exchange agreement between the Mexican and American authorities. According to Chapman, the federal agents 'sold him out', by trading him in for a convicted Mexican drug lord. Duane, Leland, and Tim had their ankle bracelets removed so they could work.

On October 11, 2006, reports surfaced of an open letter dated September 26, 2006, sent on Chapman's behalf by 29 Republican Congressmen to U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. The letter stated the authors' opposition to Chapman's extradition and requested that Rice deny Mexico'smarker request for same. Subsequently on October 20, 2006, lawyers for Chapman said that the Mexican federal court had granted them an order that halted the criminal case against the bounty hunter until further evidence and witness testimony were gathered.

A court hearing was held on December 22, 2006. The original hearing was postponed because a report from a lower court was not yet received. The court heard both sides of the story, and then decided to recess. Then court proceedings started on January 16, 2007 and the court had up to Tuesday, February 6, 2007 but the deadline was extended.

On February 16, 2007, a Mexican Federal court cleared the way for Duane Chapman to be extradited, ruling there was no reason not to try him with the charge of deprivation of liberty in Mexico. They also added that Mr. Chapman would not last five days in a Mexican prison. In response, on February 23, Hawaii State Representatives Gene Ward, Karen Awana, Rida Cabanilla, Lynn Finnegan, Barbara Marumoto, Colleen Meyer, Kymberly Pine, Joe Bertram, Ken Ito, Marylin Lee, and John Mizuno introduced 'House concurrent resolution 50', "Requesting the President of Mexico and the Second District Court of Guadalajaramarker to drop extradition charges against TV Bounty Hunter, Duane 'Dog' Chapman".

Chapman, along with his lawyer, William C. Bollard, has appeared on numerous media shows. Some of these include: Larry King Live, Greta Van Susteren, Mark and Mercedez Morning Show on Mix 94.1 KMXB in Las Vegas, The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet on WFLD, Fox 6 News San Diegomarker, The Glenn Beck Program, and THE 9 on Yahoo!.

On March 7, 2007, legislators in the International Affairs Committee of the Hawaii State House passed a resolution that asks the Mexican government to drop the extradition proceedings against Duane, Leland and Tim Chapman.

Honolulumarker news outlet KHNLmarker reported on August 1, 2007 that the arrest warrant issued for Chapman and his associates may now be invalidated, as a Mexican court has found that the statute of limitations regarding the arrest has expired. The 15-page legal order was released in Spanish and was translated and verified for legal acuity. The case against the bounty hunters may still be open to legal recourse by Mexican prosecutors.

On August 2, 2007, the First Criminal Court in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, dismissed all criminal charges pending against Duane, Tim and Leland Chapman on the grounds that the statute of limitations had expired. The order effectively canceled all pending charges. The ruling, however, was appealed by the prosecution in order to overturn the lower court's decision. A&E was told that in Mexico, rulings against the prosecution are generally appealed as a matter of principle.

On November 5, 2007, U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren dismissed the extradition attempt, saying that even though the cases were appealed, the trio are no longer charged with any offenses.

Racial slur and fall out

In March 2007, during a taped conversation with his son Tucker, Chapman used strong language, including the word "nigger," when referring to Monique Shinnery, his son's African-American girlfriend:

The audiotape, which Tucker sold to the National Enquirer, was posted online on October 31, 2007, and prompted a coalition of civil rights leaders to call for Chapman's popular Dog the Bounty Hunter show on A&E to be canceled. After the tape was made public, A&E announced it was suspending production for the series pending an investigation. Conservative civil rights leader Roy Innis said that Chapman "should not have a show."

On October 31, 2007, Chapman issued a public apology:

On November 2, 2007, A&E announced it is removing the show from their schedule "for the foreseeable future." On the same day Yum Brands announced pulling ad support for the TV series.

On December 21, 2007, Roy Innis, the chairman of the Congress of Racial Equality, one of the first to call the A&E network to have the show taken off the air, met with Alicia Colon of The New York Sun and Chapman. Innis stated for the daily newspaper, "After meeting with him and his wife, Beth, and hearing his side of the story, we realized that the controversy had unjustly spiraled out of control without context."

He went on to say, "Duane has taken ownership of the damage of his words and has taken on the responsibility of being a racial healer for our country... I have been with this man several times and had extensive dialogues with him. I consider him and his wife good friends. Duane is a changed man and has a higher purpose. Popular television is a wasteland of meaningless titillation and degradation. The Dog's potential to take his celebrity and turn it into something redeeming for our culture and society is immense. It is for these reasons that we want his television show back on the air."

Renewal of show

Innis' December 2007 statement and a petition with over 40,000 signatures requested the return of Chapman's program. On February 19, 2008, A&E announced that the show would return. Reruns of Dog The Bounty Hunter, along with never before seen episodes from season 4, began airing on June 25, 2008. New episodes (the show's fifth season) began airing on July 16, 2008.

The show is currently into its sixth season, the last new episode of which aired September 9, 2009.

Family and relationships


  • La Fonda Sue Honeycutt: Chapman married La Fonda Sue Honeycutt on April 1, 1972, in Texas; they divorced October 27 1977 while he was in prison. They have two children together, Duane Lee Chapman and Leland Chapman. Duane did not see Duane Lee and Leland for 8 years. After he got out of prison it took a very long time for Leland and Duane Lee to trust Dog and to bond with him.
  • Anne M. Tegnell: Chapman married Anne M. Tegnell on August 22, 1979, in Colorado. This marriage also ended in divorce. Three children resulted from this marriage; Zebediah Duane Chapman, Wesley Chapman, and J.R. "James" Chapman. Zebediah died shortly after birth in 1980.
  • Lyssa Rae Brittain: Chapman married Lyssa Rae Brittain on June 22, 1982. They were divorced on November 20, 1991. They have three children; Barbara-Katie Chapman, Tucker Dee Chapman, and Lyssa Rae Chapman.
  • Tawny Marie Gillespie: Chapman and Tawny Marie were married, but "officially separated in 1994." They had no children together. Tawny had a daughter from a previous marriage.
  • Beth Smith-Chapman: Chapman married his fifth wife Beth Smith-Chapman on May 20, 2006, at the Hilton Waikoloa Village in Hawaii. They have two children together; Bonnie Jo Chapman and Garry Chapman. Beth has two children from previous relationships, Dominic and Cecily Barmore.


Duane Chapman Children
  1. Christopher Hecht
  2. Duane Lee Chapman II
  3. Leland Blaine Chapman
  4. Zebadiah Duane Chapman (deceased)
  5. James "J.R." Chapman
  6. Wesley Chapman
  7. Barbara-Katie Chapman (deceased)
  8. Tucker Dee Chapman
  9. "Baby" Lyssa Rae Chapman
  10. Nicholas Chapman
  11. Cecily Barmore-Chapman (adopted)
  12. Bonnie Jo Chapman
  13. Garry Chapman
  14. Dominic (step-son)


  1. IMDB bio
  2. Dog The Bounty Hunter Official Website
  3. Duane Chapman - Yahoo! TV
  4. The trial must go on: Conviction in absentia, Court TV news, Updated June 18, 2003, 7:16 p.m. ET
  6. E! News - Dog N-Bombs Himself into Hiatus - Duane Chapman
  7. Bounty Hunter Dog to return to the air | Entertainment | Television | Reuters

External links


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