OKLAHOMA CITY – A push to restrict bounty hunters in Oklahoma gets the support of a popular reality TV star.
“Dog the Bounty Hunter” spent time at the statehouse Tuesday.
He came to lend his support for a bill that would require all bounty hunters in the state to pass CLEET certification.
Complaints of bounty hunters kicking in doors are nothing new in Oklahoma.
“We don’t have any training for people doing this work,” Sen. Ralph Shortey said.
Shortey authored a bill that passed the state senate, essentially making it a felony to practice bounty hunting without a license.
“Anybody can go out and lay hands on a person,” Shortey said. “It’s not regulated at all. We need to make sure the right people are doing this job.”
Shortey now has a popular supporter.
Duane “Dog” Chapman and his wife, Beth, came to the State Capitol, walking the halls and taking pictures with lawmakers and Capitol workers.
The Chapmans also received applause from the state senate because the pair travel the country encouraging states to pass laws regulating their business.
“We’re gonna close that non-law door and make people responsible as they’re bounty hunting to go by certain rules,” Chapman said.
Chapman said Shortey’s bill would put Oklahoma in the minority because most states don’t regulate bounty hunting but it’s a move “Dog” and Beth said they support.
“There’s very few states that have any laws,” he said. “Oklahoma is known as an open law state. The senator is going to close that door. You have to have rules. That’s how it is. Unregulated areas you can see things happen that people are upset about.”
Shortey’s bill passed the state senate with a unanimous vote.
The bill is now in the house awaiting a vote.