‘Dog' the bounty hunter provides valuable input on legislation
I've always believed that the private sector, given the opportunity, can operate more efficiently than government. In few areas is that concept better exemplified than in bail bonding. Returning defendants to custody is the most difficult part of the industry. It's also when the industry is most reliant on bounty hunters.
Oklahoma has seen an influx of bad actors in this field. High-profile stories have caused public outcry and requests to do something. For two years, my colleagues and I have been attempting to reform the industry through training, regulation and certification for bounty hunters. This has drawn the interest of one of the most recognizable characters on reality television — Duane “Dog” the Bounty Hunter. I had heard many opinions about Dog and his character. I had also heard many opinions about how his team members conduct themselves during the operation of their business. These questions were answered when I was given the opportunity recently to spend time with Dog and his team in Oklahoma City.
The bulk of Dog's and his wife Beth's time on the job is spent in preparation and in counseling defendants. In each case, the couple would immediately begin doing what they could to help defendants turn their lives around. Upon their release, many defendants were ready and willing to do so. We are blessed to have their input on establishing regulations for their industry. I count it an honor to call them my friends and look forward to working with them in the future.
Sen. Ralph Shortey, Oklahoma City
Shortey, a Republican, is author of Senate Bill 1013, which would create the Bail Enforcement and Licensing Act.