More Than A Year After His Arrest, Former 19 Kids And Counting Star Josh Duggar Has Been Sentenced After Child Pornography Conviction

Josh Duggar’s sentencing finally came down Wednesday, May 25th, but it’s taken some time to get to this moment. The former 19 Kids and Counting star was arrested in April of 2021 and faced one count of receiving and one count of possessing child pornography charges after evidence had been seized at a used car dealership the former reality star had worked at. After delays, Duggar’s trial kicked off late last year, but even after being found guilty, the case has seen more postponement ahead of sentencing. Until today, when Judge Timothy L. Brooks made the final call to send Duggar away for 151 months, which amounts to between 12 and 13 years.

Initially it seemed that Josh Duggar could face up to $250,000 in fines and 20 years in prison on each of the counts he was found guilty on, but more recent reports indicated that Duggar would only be facing sentencing on the more major of the two charges, so up to 20 years and $250,000 total in fines. Ahead of sentencing day, prosecutors had pushed for the maximum of the sentence to be doled out, citing the large number of images downloaded and the graphic nature of the images. In the end, he'll be going away for more than a dozen years, pending appeal.

On Wednesday morning a line had formed outside of the courthouse in Fayetteville, Arkansas, according to 4029 News. After the sentencing, it was reported by the U.S. Sun that Josh Duggar had "no reaction" when the sentencing was announced. He will either be sent to prison in Texarkana, Arkansas for his prison time, or he'll be shipped out to Seagoville, Texas.

Prior to the final outcome, the prosecution had maintained that Duggar’s past behavior, which includes molestation incidents that led to the cancellation of his TLC show in 2015 and his removal from reality television entirely, provided an “alarming window” into his interest in young children. The prosecution also noted in its filing ahead of sentencing (via CBS News):

This past conduct, when viewed alongside the conduct for which he has been convicted, makes clear that Duggar has a deep-seated, pervasive, and violent sexual interest in children, and a willingness to act on that interest.

Duggar’s mother, Michelle Duggar, had pleaded for “leniency” when it came to her eldest son. His wife, Anna, the mother of his seven children has also stood by his side over the past year plus, and reportedly has regularly communicated with her husband while has has been in prison. The Duggar couple welcomed their seventh child after his arrest. 

Yesterday was also a major day when it came to news related to Josh Duggar’s case. As we’ve waited for sentencing, his legal team had filed several motions, including one for acquittal. Yesterday, the aforementioned Judge Timothy L. Brooks also made a ruling on that front, denying both requests for either acquittal or a new trial following the Duggar case.  

Duggar was due in court in Arkansas on May 25th after a previous sentencing date had been scheduled in April of 2022. Both the prosecution and defense had “conferred” on the subject of a sentencing delay and seemed on the same page about a delay possibly going through, which is how sentencing ultimately got shifted to the end of May. 

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.