It’s no secret making moonshine is a tricky business. Not only is the practice of at-home distilling incredibly complex, but it’s also illegal. That’s what makes Discovery’s long-standing docudrama Moonshiners so fascinating.
Filmed in the heart of Appalachia, Moonshiners follows a dozen men engaging in the precarious art of distilling illicit liquor. In the show's 12 season tenure, viewers constantly wonder how the cast members don’t get caught.
However, one castmate's constant legal trouble on the show has led fans to believe that his actions have finally caught up with him. Let’s take a look at Josh Owens, a motocross rider and fan-favorite moonshiner, and his dangerous distilling history.
Josh Owens frequently makes poor decisions regarding his distilling sites.
During Season 10 of Moonshiners, Josh was largely absent at the beginning of the season — leading viewers to think he might have been arrested. And when he appears later on, we can see why. Looking for a new space to set up his distilling materials, Josh enlists the help of his friend Chris. After setting up his moonshining site in Chris’ building, he soon discovers that Chris doesn’t own the building and finds himself in hot water with the building’s real owner.
This wasn’t the first time Josh got busted for his distilling site setup. Viewers have pointed out that he's constantly getting in trouble for his choice of locations.
“D—n it, man. I am beginning to think Josh is in the wrong business,” one fan commented on a YouTube clip of Josh’s unfortunate run-in with the building’s landlord in Season 10. “I've been watching this show since the beginning and that poor boy has had to work 10 times as hard as all the other shiners…He just can't catch a break.”
Josh Owens started a major moonshine fire in Season 11.
Things only got worse for the motocross moonshiner in Season 11. In an attempt to make moonshine from maple sap, Josh accidentally burnt down his house in a massive fire — putting the entire operation at risk.
And this wasn’t the first time something like this had happened. In 2017, Josh found his trailer and its contents engulfed in flames when he returned from the 77th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.
With his poor distilling site choices, combined with his tendency to start fires, it’s no wonder fans are speculating about his legal status.
So, did Josh Owens from 'Moonshiners' ever get arrested?
There has been no shortage of run-ins with the law involving the Moonshiners cast. From Tickle’s multiple arrests to Popcorn Sutton’s sentencing and suicide, the group frequently finds themself in trouble with the authorities. And given Josh’s many moonshining mishaps, viewers wonder if he has ever gotten arrested.
Surprisingly, there's no evidence supporting Josh’s arrest rumors. In fact, he has been quite active on social media in recent months, posting on Instagram multiple times per week. And now that he’s taken his entire moonshining operation outdoors in Moonshiners Season 12 (he is literally living in the wilderness), the odds of him encountering legal trouble have diminished significantly.
To watch Josh evade the authorities from the comfort of the woods, tune into Season 12 of Moonshiners on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Discovery.