Dog The Bounty Hunter Sued: Lawsuit’s Backstory Involves Murder And Politics?

A Hawaii-based bondsman is having Dog the Bounty Hunter sued for $30 million. Charles Fisher claims the TV show Dog and Beth: On the Hunt portrayed him as a corrupt bounty hunter, and now his reputation in the industry is ruined. But it turns out the rivalry between Fisher and Duane “Dog” Chapman may go back further than one TV episode.

In a related report by the Inquisitr, Charles Fisher had Dog the Bounty Hunter sued after the Dog and Beth: On the Hunt TV show allegedly fabricated a phone conversation in order to make it appear as if Fisher made off with $20,000 in collateral, ripped off his insurance company, and used a connection within a local jail in order to bring in business.

Fisher believes the $30 million lawsuit is the only way to recover the money he has lost, but in order to understand the history behind the lawsuit, we have to go back all the way to when Dog the Bounty Hunter was himself a criminal. As a teen, young Duane Chapman had multiple run-ins with the police, including being arrested for robbery. But it was the murder of a drug dealer named Jerry Lee Oliver that changed Chapman’s life forever.

While in Texas at the age of 23, young Chapman was in a car outside a house where a friend was buying marijuana. Unfortunately, the friend got into an argument with the drug dealer and shot him. Although Chapman did not pull the trigger himself, everyone in the group was found guilty of murder.

“It’s something that follows you the rest of your life, no matter who you become or who you are,” Chapman told the Associated Press. “I’m not proud of it. In Texas in the `70s, if you were present, you were just as guilty. I shouldn’t have went and I shouldn’t have been the person I was back then.”

Duane Chapman was sentenced to five years in prison but was paroled in less than two years. After serving his time in prison, Chapman reformed his life and vowed to make a living on the right side of the law. On his first day of release from prison, Dog the Bounty Hunter caught his first bail jumper, and he has gone on to catch thousands more over the years.

But Dog’s actions as a youth still follow him around to this day. The murder conviction has caused problems with visiting foreign countries, even after his reality TV show became popular. But the biggest threat to his livelihood was Hawaii’s Senate Bill 2776, which would have introduced several new requirements, according to BountyHunterEdu.org.

  • Must be at least 21 years of age
  • Must pass a state licensing exam
  • Cannot have any felony or misdemeanor convictions involving moral turpitude
  • Must submit fingerprints for a background check
  • Must complete continuing education requirements

The third requirement would put Dog the Bounty Hunter’s Da Kine Bail Bonds out of business. While Chapman opposed that particular stipulation, he did agree bounty hunting needed government regulation.

“Bounty hunters provide a great service to the state of Hawaii,” Chapman said at the time, according to Hawaii News Now. “I absolutely believe Hawaii needs to [regulate bounty hunters], but this is not the way. We can work on something together to make this a good bill for all the people of Hawaii. But the way it stands now, the bill is biased to the fugitive and competitors who’d like to see Dog out of business.”

The state bill was considered politically motivated by Dog since the bounty hunting community in the state of Hawaii is very small. In fact, there are less than 10 bail bonds agencies in all of the islands, and Charles Fisher happens to be the owner of one of them. So, as a competitor to Dog the Bounty Hunter, perhaps it’s not surprising that he supported the bill.

“There are parts of [the] bill that deserve attention. People should be trained and licensed in this. I have a gardener who works in my yard and he has to have a license to plant a flower,” said Fisher.

Following this political conflict, the Dog and Beth: On the Hunt TV show portrayed Fisher as a “corrupt bondsman.” In response, Fisher had Dog the Bounty Hunter sued for this portrayal since he claims it ruined his business. Whatever the truth may be, the competing bounty hunters will now duke it out in the courts, with $30 million hanging in the balance.

[Image via Getty Images]