Duggar Sister Speaks Out After Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Related To Josh Duggar’s Molestation Report

Over the last few months, several Duggar-related cases were working their way through the court system. The first was Josh Duggar’s child pornography case, in which Duggar was found guilty and sentencing is expected in April. A second misdemeanor regarding Jana Duggar also briefly made news. Amidst this, four of the Duggar sisters were also embroiled in an ongoing lawsuit related to the infamous Josh Duggar molestation report. That is until this week, when U.S. District Judge Timothy L. Brooks dismissed the suit. Now one Duggar sister, Jill, has spoken out. 

Jill Duggar Dillard did not hold back in her assessment of what happened with the lawsuit after an incident in 2015 when In Touch used the Freedom of Information Act in order to obtain records the famous Arkansas-based family thought had been sealed. The release of these reports led to 19 Kids and Counting getting cancelled and while a new show, Counting On, was later commissioned without Josh, the four Duggar sisters who were victims sued in 2017 over what had happened. This week, they lost their suit.

Jill Duggar Dillard took to the family blog she shares with her husband Derick in order to share her thoughts on the matter. She said the family feels “vindicated” in that the Judge “recognized the law was clear and the records should never be released,” but she does not seem to be particularly happy about the outcome, given that a federal judge ultimately opted to dismiss the case and stated that those the four sisters had been suing were "immune" from any sort of liability regarding what happened. 

While we appreciate the hard work the Court has put into our case and we highly respect the Judge, we are disappointed with the ruling that the City and County’s statutory immunity protects them from our claims. It is unfortunate that bad actors, under the guise of public service, are given a license to intentionally inflict pain without regard for innocent victims. Immunity exists to protect public servants in the event of human error. It is not to be used as an excuse to cause intentional harm.

Jill Duggar had left the TLC family and Counting On even before it was cancelled in the wake of Josh Duggar’s child pornography-related arrest, and she has been open in the past about her feelings on more topics than many of the other Duggars. This includes everything from why she’s OK drinking alcohol now to wearing pants and yes, even getting honest about why she left the TLC show. So it’s not super surprising that she might comment on the matter, though she is vociferous in her post. 

In the pursuit of justice, the impact on victims, especially child sex victims, should not be an afterthought, and they should not be relegated to collateral damage. Victims need to be supported and protected, not hung out to dry simply because the end justifies the means. They have been blamed, shamed, and bullied into silence for too long, so why are we surprised that perpetrators continue to be emboldened while victims are punished for their voice.

Meanwhile, it was expected that we would be hearing about the Duggar lawsuit this month. Jill Duggar Dillard, Joy-Anna Duggar Forsyth, Jessa Duggar Seewald, and Jinger Duggar Vuolo were previously set for a conference on February 10 that could determine the outcome of the case. If the verdict had not come down this week, a trial date had been scheduled for April 18, 2022.

The Duggar sisters had sued both individuals and the city of Springdale, saying they were victims of abuse and the report had affected their lives and livelihoods. From what Jill herself quoted from the hearing, the judge agreed the report should not have been released, calling the defendants on the case "grossly negligent," but this wasn't enough to bring the lawsuit to trial as it the Judge did not believe any sort of distress was intended. Duggar brother Josh also previously unsuccessfully sued over the release of the report prior to his more recent legal troubles.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Reality TV fan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. Theme park junkie. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.