Where’s former reality TV star Josh Duggar now? Will he face jail time?
If you’re even a little bit familiar with reality television, chances are you’ve heard of Josh Duggar. The star hit the airwaves with his family in 2008 and has been in & out of the news ever since.
And now, he might be heading to jail. Who is he, and what exactly did he do? Let’s go over his history and find out together.
Who is Josh Duggar?
Joshua James Duggar is an American reality TV star, who gained fame & recognition from the TLC show centered around his family, 19 Kids and Counting. The show followed the life of Josh’s parents, Baptists Jim Bob & Michelle Duggar as they bring up their many kids.
Duggar started dating a woman, Anna Renée Keller, in 2007 and married just a year later (their wedding was aired in the 19 Kids and Counting episode “A Very Duggar Wedding”). The two of them have seven children, and recently had another birth, which we’ll discuss more in a later section.
Duggar also got into politics, inspired by his father’s short term in the Arkansas House of Representatives. He was an executive director at FRC Action for two years. FRC Action is a branch of the Family Research Council (FRC), an American lobbyist group known for its stance on “family values”, which includes funding anti-homosexuality campaigns, holding pro-life positions, and being against divorce.
Duggar’s involvement with the FRC, which is classified as an anti-LGBT hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, has leaked over into his reputation. While the FRC president Tony Perkins said they hoped to appeal to more people because of Duggar’s reputation from 19 Kids and Counting, GLAAD (the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) has classified him as an “anti-gay activist”.
That’s where Duggar was. Where’s Josh Duggar now? Let’s dig into his criminal activities, shall we?
Duggar’s illegal offenses
In 2015, In Touch Weekly published a shocking report: in 2006, Jim Bob Duggar had told the police in Arkansas that Josh had molested five underage girls, including people in his own family, when Josh was a teenager. Instead of contacting authorities right away, Jim Bob Duggar told church elders and sent Josh to a “Christian program” which was little more than yard work for a few months.
Josh Duggar responded with a post on his Instagram. He said, “Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret,” and explained how he confessed to his parents, who acted to help him (with the “stern talk” and yard work we described above. Not enough, sorry!)
Jim Bob & Michelle Duggar also released a statement, again describing Josh as a “young teenager” and saying “he made some very bad mistakes,” wrapping a horrible sexual assaulter’s actions into a message that “[God] can bring you through anything,” instead of actually discussing what happened or addressing the victim’s trauma in any way. Inexcusable.
In the aftermath of this, Duggar resigned from his position at FRC Action, and TLC pulled 19 Kids and Counting off the air before canceling it a few months later. They attempted a spinoff show called Counting On later in 2015, but that was canceled this year when Duggar was arrested for child pornography.
Wait, what? Where’s Josh Duggar now, exactly? Let’s discuss those child pornography charges, shall we?
The most recent developments
Duggar had other allegations—2015 was quite a year for him. It was discovered that he had an account on Ashely Madison, a website for couples to have affairs. Also, porn star Danica Dillon brought a lawsuit against Duggar, claiming he had physically assaulted her. As a result of the former, Duggar entered a treatment facility, and the latter suit was dropped by Dillion.
However, things really came to a head in 2021. In late April, Duggar was arrested on charges of child pornography, and prosecutors claim he knowingly obtained illegal images in 2019. He was taken to Washington County Jail and pleaded not guilty. He was granted bail, but the judge said that he couldn’t be around any kids without his wife, and noted that his porn has kids that “are very close to the ages of your children.”
In July, Josh & Anna Duggar released a “Family Statement on ‘Counting on’” on their website. In it, they discuss their relationship with Jesus Christ and reminisce about being filmed over the years, all without directly addressing the trial or the charges.
A plea deal was offered to Duggar, but he didn’t meet the deadline to receive it. The trial itself was scheduled for the summer but was delayed until late November. Duggar’s lawyers tried to get the case dismissed in what the judge described as “frivolous” actions, which didn’t work.
Where’s Josh Duggar now? Well, he is currently facing up to twenty years in jail and fines of a quarter of a million dollars. We’ll see where he goes.
Where will Duggar end up?
That brings us to the most recent piece of news. On November 16th, 2021, as the trial went on, Duggar’s wife Anna birthed their seventh child, Madyson Lily. She posted a picture to her Instagram, where she has yet to discuss the charges brought to her husband. According to a source from People magazine, “She’s standing by him. She thinks Josh is innocent.”
Meanwhile, Duggar is on thin ice. An agent of Homeland Security, Gerald Faulkner, who helped raid Duggar dealership for evidence, stated that of the thousand cases of child porn he’s investigated, Duggar’s 200 images on his work computer were “in the top five of the worst of the worst that I’ve ever had to examine.” This was from his testimony at the hearing, and he is expected to speak at the trial.
Where’s Josh Duggar now? Hopefully, he’ll soon be rotting in jail.