Duane “Dog the Bounty Hunter” Chapman told The New York Times that he is not only struggling emotionally in the wake of his wife Beth Chapman’s death last year, but he is struggling financially as well.
The reality star and bounty hunter told the news outlet that supporting his large family and years of medical treatment for his late wife has put him in a financially difficult position, forcing him to focus on catching fugitives more than ever or risk losing his Colorado home to the bank.
“I’m broke,” he admitted.
Chapman has 13 kids and has been married multiple times. On top of his wife’s medical bills, he also has faced his own medical challenges, including being recently diagnosed with a pulmonary embolism.
It’s not just the bills that have been piling up. He has also struggled over the years to keep his career running, starting in 2006, after his son sold a recording of him using a racial slur to a media outlet, resulting in his book being pulled from stores and causing him to lose licensing deals. The show that carries his name and helped make him famous was put on hold by the network.
He has since apologized for using the word, saying that he thought it was acceptable since his mother is Native American, and pushed back against the claim that he was racist.
“I’ll never be forgiven for that one,” he said. “Some people form an opinion of me that I can’t change, but you’ve talked to me and I’m not a racist.”
These days, he doesn’t have a television contract, though he apparently has new pitches for shows that he’s working on.
Chapman told the news outlet that he was working on changing the legal system because he knows first-hand that it needs an overhaul, but without his wife, it has been more of a challenge to get things done.
“I am the prime example of the system: The bail bond system, the legal system, of crime,” he said. “I’m a second chance. Guys who don’t have job hopes when they get out, why do you think they go back to what they were doing before they were convicted? If I can change, anyone can. But it’s going to be a lot harder now without Beth, that’s for sure.”
The interview, which was published on Friday, took place in September of 2019, just months after his wife’s death from cancer, while he was hunting a bounty that could help him keep his home, but time was running out. He was granted an extension to find the bounty, but, according to the NYT, his financial issues are still haunting him.