When most people think of Duane Chapman, or Dog the Bounty Hunter, they picture the television show in which he starred. Throughout the series, Chapman had always portrayed himself as an honest and law-abiding citizen. When Chapman caught up with criminals who were on the run, he made a habit of trying to send them on the right path, giving speeches about doing the right thing. That is why people are often shocked when they learn about Chapman’s controversial past.
During his teen years, Chapman was a member of a motorcycle gang that was known for committing a range of violent crimes. Although no evidence conclusively supports the claim, some people believe that Chapman committed around 18 armed robberies during his time in the gang. Chapman’s life took an even worse turn in the 1970s, and he found himself facing murder charges.
Although he did not commit the crime, he was present when it happened. Since Chapman was allegedly with his friend to buy drugs when the murder occurred, he found himself behind bars. If someone dies during a felony, the court can charge the defendants with murder even if they were not responsible for the death.
After spending 18 months in prison for a murder he says he never committed, Chapman wasted no time getting himself into additional legal trouble. His next court appearance was about allegations of unpaid child support. At the time, he would have been unable to pay the money he owed, which could have resulted in him going to jail.
Chapman explained his situation to the judge and hoped for mercy, and what happened next changed his life forever. If Chapman agreed to do a favor for the court, the judge would reduce the amount of money owed. The judge asked him to bring a man who had skipped bail into the courtroom to face justice. Chapman agreed to the deal and decided to make better choices in life, which sparked his career as the famed bounty hunter. Chapman started out on the wrong path but found a way out, and he dedicated his life to helping others do the same.