The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Reality TV star Josh Duggar sentenced to 12 years in child porn case

Former reality TV star Josh Duggar, pictured in an undated photo from the detention center in Washington County, Ark., was sentenced Wednesday to more than 12 years in prison for receiving and possessing child pornography. (Washington County Detention Center/AP)
Placeholder while article actions load

Former reality television star Josh Duggar was sentenced Wednesday to 151 months — or about 12½ years — in prison as part of his child pornography case, according to the Associated Press. An Arkansas jury in December found Duggar guilty of both receiving and possessing child pornography.

Duggar, 34, faced up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each count, the AP reported. His attorney Justin Gelfand confirmed to The Washington Post on Wednesday that the second count, which was for possessing child pornography, had been dropped during the sentencing.

“We’re grateful the judge dismissed Count 2 and rejected the Government’s request for a 240-month sentence,” Gelfand said in a statement. “We look forward to continuing the fight on appeal.”

Duggar rose to fame for starring alongside his parents and siblings in TLC’s “19 Kids and Counting,” which highlighted aspects of the family’s self-described “very conservative” way of life. The show was canceled in May 2015 after In Touch Weekly published allegations that Duggar had molested multiple young girls as a teenager. Duggar issued a statement apologizing for unspecified “wrongdoing” and resigned from his job as executive director of the lobbying arm of the Family Research Council, a conservative Christian group known for its anti-LGBTQ and antiabortion views.

In June 2015, Duggar’s parents, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, told Fox News that the alleged victims were four of his younger sisters and a babysitter. Later that year, TLC greenlit the “19 Kids and Counting” spinoff series “Counting On,” which featured the Duggar family members apart from Josh. The show was canceled in April 2021 after he was arrested on child pornography charges.