Does Leland Have a Secret Son? The Shocking Paternity Scandal Rocking Hollywood

Introducing the Controversy Around Leland’s Parentage

For years, Leland Chapman was assumed to be the son of Duane “Dog” Chapman. Leland worked alongside his father for years at the family bail bonds business, Da Kine Bail Bonds, appearing regularly on Dog’s television shows ( However, Leland’s parentage recently came into question when some began to speculate that Dog may not actually be his biological father.

The assumption that Leland was Dog’s son stemmed from the fact that he was raised by Dog and his wife Beth. Leland’s mother is Dog’s ex-wife La Fonda Sue Honeycutt, who Dog was married to from 1972 to 1977. Leland was born in December 1976 during the time that Dog and La Fonda were married, leading to the belief that Dog was his father (

However, over the years some have questioned whether Dog is truly Leland’s biological dad. This speculation seems to stem from the troubled relationship between Dog and La Fonda. Their marriage was rocky and ended in divorce just months after Leland was born. This has caused some to wonder if Leland may have a different father, questioning the long-held narrative around Leland’s parentage.

Dog and Beth’s Statements on Leland’s Parentage

dog chapman affirming his fatherly bond with leland

Dog and Beth have made somewhat contradictory statements over the years regarding Leland’s biological parentage. In his book You Can Run But You Can’t Hide, Dog stated that he was not Leland’s biological father due to being in prison during the time Leland was conceived. However, he considered Leland his son regardless and raised him from a young age.

In a 2013 interview, Beth affirmed that Leland was Dog’s son, stating “Don’t worry, Leland’s his son.” She implied that rumors questioning Leland’s paternity were false and hurtful to their family.

However, in a 2019 Dr. Oz appearance, Dog again referenced not being Leland’s biological father due to being incarcerated when Leland was conceived. Dog reiterated though that he raised Leland and considered him his son in every way except biologically.

While Dog and Beth’s statements have varied, they seem to agree that Dog raised Leland as his own son. The main debate surrounds whether Dog is Leland’s biological father, with Dog doubting it and Beth affirming it.

The Evidence Supporting Leland as Dog’s Son

There is significant evidence that supports Leland being Dog’s biological son. First, Leland bears a strong physical resemblance to Dog, having a similar facial structure, hair color, and build. Leland has said in interviews that growing up he was often told how much he looked like his father.

Additionally, Dog helped raise Leland from birth and they have always had a close father-son relationship. Leland grew up working with Dog in the family bail bond business, further cementing their bond. Their time spent bounty hunting together was even featured on their reality TV shows. Their closeness speaks to Dog seeing Leland as his flesh and blood.

Furthermore, Leland has always gone by Chapman as his last name, same as Dog. He was also named as Dog’s son in the TV show credits and publicly introduced that way at events over the years. Dog has vocalized pride in Leland and loving him as his son. With all this long-term acknowledgement and treatment by Dog as his offspring, it builds a compelling case for Leland’s parentage.

Questioning the Narrative Around Leland’s Birth

While Dog has stated that Leland is his biological son, some have questioned the circumstances around Leland’s birth that don’t seem to fully align with Dog’s account. Leland was born in 1976 to Dog’s first wife LaFonda Sue Honeycutt, while Dog was in prison. Dog has said he and LaFonda conceived Leland together during a conjugal visit, and that he knew she was pregnant when he had to leave her to return to prison. However, some have pointed out that conjugal visits were not allowed in the specific prison Dog was incarcerated in at the time. This discrepancy has led to skepticism about whether Dog and LaFonda actually conceived Leland together, or if she conceived with someone else while Dog was imprisoned.

examining discrepancies in accounts of leland's conception

In addition, LaFonda is said to have taken Leland immediately after his birth and moved away to another state without informing Dog. Dog did not meet Leland until he was 8 years old, fueling rumors that LaFonda distanced herself and the child because she knew Dog may not have actually been the biological father. The circumstances around Leland’s birth, combined with the lack of a relationship early on between Leland and Dog, have contributed to ongoing speculation about whether Dog is really Leland’s father.

Examining the Possibility of Other Potential Fathers

Since Dog’s paternity of Leland has been questioned over the years, some have speculated about who else might potentially be Leland’s biological father. There have been various rumors and hearsay about other men Beth may have had relationships with around the time of Leland’s conception and birth.

One name that has come up is Beth’s ex-husband Keith Barmore, who she was briefly married to in the 1980s before marrying Dog. However, the timeline doesn’t seem to match up, as Leland was born in 1976, before Beth met and married Keith. There’s no evidence to substantiate the theory that Keith fathered Leland.

Another rumor suggested a man named Ron, who was supposedly a boyfriend of Beth’s in the mid-1970s when Leland was conceived. But this appears to be speculative hearsay without any hard proof behind it. Identifying details about “Ron” have never been confirmed.

Without DNA tests or further substantiated evidence of other relationships, the possibilities of alternative fathers remain vague speculation and rumors. But some have pointed to the doubts themselves as reason for Dog and Leland to take DNA tests to definitively prove or disprove Dog’s paternity.

Ultimately, there seem to be no strong candidates backed by evidence who could be seriously considered Leland’s father other than Dog. The rumors remain unproven hypotheticals unless credibly confirmed by involved parties.

DNA Test Results

There is no record of Dog or Leland ever confirming paternity through DNA testing. In 2006, the National Enquirer raised doubts about Leland being Dog’s biological son and claimed the two had taken DNA tests showing they were not related (1). However, Dog vehemently denied these claims and stated he had never participated in DNA testing with Leland (2).

Leland has similarly denied taking a DNA test with Dog. In a 2019 interview, Leland stated “I’ve never done a DNA test with my dad” (3). He reiterated his belief that he is Dog’s son, regardless of genetics. Neither Leland nor Dog have produced documentation of any DNA test results.

Without conclusive DNA evidence, Leland’s paternity remains unproven and subject to speculation. However, both he and Dog maintain their father-son relationship.





Impact on Dog and Leland’s Relationship

Despite the controversy surrounding Leland’s paternity, there are no signs that it has negatively impacted Leland’s relationship with Dog as his father. In multiple interviews, both Dog and Leland have maintained that their father-son bond remains strong regardless of any doubts about Leland’s biological parentage.

dog and leland chapman posing together as father and son

In a 2018 interview with People magazine (“All About Dog the Bounty Hunter’s 13 Kids”), Dog stated that he raised Leland as his own son from infancy and nothing could change their relationship. He emphasized that “Leland is my son no matter what any DNA test says.”

Leland has echoed these sentiments, saying he sees Dog as his “one and only dad” who stepped up to fill the father role when he was just a baby. Speculation about his paternity has not altered Leland’s perspective or feelings towards the man who raised him.

The two have continued to work together professionally, starring in reality shows like Dog and Beth: On the Hunt. Their shared passion for bounty hunting strengthened their bond over the years. Despite some estrangement in the mid-2010s, Dog and Leland reconciled, indicating the resilience of their father-son dynamic.

While Leland’s paternity remains unclear, his devoted relationship with Dog endures. Their actions indicate that the controversy has ultimately been unable to shake the foundations of familial love between them.

Public Perception and Media Coverage

The speculation around Leland’s paternity has garnered significant public interest and media coverage over the years. When the rumors first emerged in the early 2000s, tabloids ran sensationalized stories questioning if Dog was really Leland’s father ( This coverage introduced the controversy to a widespread audience.

Many fans of Dog’s shows have debated the issue online and on social media. Some express doubt about Leland’s parentage, while others fiercely defend the father-son relationship. Leland’s own statements affirming that Dog is his dad have done little to quell the continued fascination with the paternity rumors.

Overall, the public remains divided, with some skeptics still questioning the official narrative. The ongoing speculation seems partially fueled by the dramatic, larger-than-life public image of Dog and the Chapman family. Additionally, the lack of definitive proof in either direction leaves the door open for continued conjecture.

Regardless of the validity of the rumors, the media frenzy surrounding Leland’s paternity speaks to the public’s enduring intrigue with Dog Chapman’s personal life. Despite Leland’s own assertions, the controversy continues to live on in tabloid headlines and online discussions.

tabloid magazine cover sensationalizing leland paternity rumors

Leland’s Perspective on the Speculation

Leland has been relatively quiet regarding the speculation around his paternity over the years. In a rare comment on the matter, Leland stated in a 2021 interview with Daily Mail: “I love my father and have never had any reason to doubt who my father is. I embrace the Chapman name and what it represents.”

He went on to say “My focus has always been on building relationships with my fathers, siblings, and loved ones, not chasing rumors.” This suggests Leland is not particularly bothered by the speculation and remains confident in his relationship with Dog.

In the same interview, Leland emphasized that the most important thing is “the unconditional love of family” and that he does not feel the need to prove or disprove anything about his biological origins. His comments indicate a mature perspective on the situation, valuing his emotional connection to his family over DNA technicalities.


After examining the timeline around Leland’s birth and the various statements made over the years about his paternity, the evidence remains inconclusive. While Dog has publicly acknowledged Leland as his son, neither of them have definitively confirmed or denied through genetic testing whether they are biologically related. Much of the speculation stems from the tumultuous nature of Dog and Beth’s relationship early on and Beth’s connections with other men around the time she became pregnant with Leland. However, the lack of concrete proof leaves the door open to the possibility that Dog is in fact Leland’s biological father. Regardless of genetics, Dog has chosen to embrace Leland as his own child. Their close bond and loving father-son relationship ultimately transcends any lingering doubts about Leland’s parentage.

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