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Several Family Members Have Attended Josh Duggar's Child Pornography Trial. Some Have Complicated Relationships To The Case

After months of Josh Duggar’s case going through various motions to dismiss and pre-trial delays, the former 19 Kids and Counting star’s case kicked off in Arkansas last week. Jury selection was undergone -- and involved booting out a Duggar relation before it was finalized. Meanwhile, across the early days of the trial, some family Duggar clan members were seen in the courtroom. 

Noting the names is not necessarily an indication they are there in support of Josh Duggar, however. While Josh’s wife Anna Duggar has stuck by his side, reportedly visiting the third-party home where he stayed during the months he was out on bail before welcoming their seventh child, other Duggar family members showing up might be for more complicated reasons. 

So far, seen in the courtroom have been some of Duggar’s siblings, his parent Jim Bob Duggar (more on that later), his wife Anna Duggar, some of his siblings’ also-famous reality star partners and more. You can take a look at the list of who has showed up so far below:

  • Anna Duggar (wife)
  • Derick Dillard (husband of Jill Duggar Dillard)
  • Jed Duggar
  • Justin Duggar and Claire Spivey Duggar
  • Joy-Anna Duggar Forsyth and Austin Forsyth

Anna Duggar has apparently been on hand for the trial since Day 1. She has been seen in the courtroom on numerous occasions, though it was reported that she had to leave early on Wednesday of last week after the prosecution spoke out about the case and the alleged evidence against her husband in in graphic detail. 

Other family members have waffled in and out. On December 1, Derick Dillard was seen in the courtroom (via US Weekly) and he sat next to Anna Duggar during the proceedings. On December 2, Justin Duggar and Claire Spivey were reported to be in the courtroom, along with Spivey’s mother. 

On December 3, Joy-Anna Duggar and Austin Forsyth were seen in court and seemingly supporting Anna, as Joy-Anna was spotted hugging her sister-in-law (via The Sun) and handing her coffee. The couple had previously been in the courtroom but sat near the back.  

Various outlets are also noting that family patriarch Jim Bob Duggar has not actually appeared in the courtroom since the trial kicked off. However, he was asked to speak at a November 29th pre-trial event. This is where the motivations of some of the attendees at the trial get a little complicated. Jim Bob spoke out about the now-infamous molestation report that In Touch broke some years back and that ended Duggar’s reality TV career. 

That report may now come into play in Josh Duggar’s trial on child pornography charges, though his legal team has attempted to keep the information out of the current case. In particular, Josh was alleged to have touched young women, including four of his sisters, some years before his arrest on child pornography charges. Those sisters were documented as Jessa Duggar, Jill Duggar, Joy-Anna Duggar and Jinger Duggar. 

For the sisters listed in the report, there is a connection to this case as well. They are separately fighting their own legal battle in relation to the report’s release. That case has been ongoing for years, and earlier in November the sisters scored a win in court when the judge refused to throw out the case. Jessa, Jill, Joy-Anna and Jinger have in their own lawsuit alleged that their names being released when they were victims has had ramifications on their lives and careers in the time since. 

Originally, the family all appeared on 19 Kids and Counting and its various other iterations together. That series was cancelled after the molestation report broke. Then, the sisters worked together on the spinoff Counting On, which did not feature Josh. Jill and Derick Dillard had left the show a while back, but it was ultimately also cancelled following Josh Duggar's arrest. 

Now the eldest Duggar son could face up to 20 years apiece on each of the two charges he is facing, as well as steep fines. Day 4 (in the second week) of the trial kicked off Monday, December 6. 

Jessica Rawden

Amazing Race & Top Chef superfan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.