Years after a sex scandal threatened to destroy the reality TV empire the Duggar family built, a former fellow churchgoer is speaking out about how Josh Duggar allegedly paid for his sins. Radar Online spoke with the anonymous ex-parishioner, who claims Duggar was punished publicly after it was revealed that he molested several young girls, including a few of his sisters.
The former church member told Radar Online Josh was the only child they recalled "getting publicly in trouble" at the church. According to the insider, the scandal destroyed the church.
"Josh's molestation scandal is burned into my memory because the church fell apart because of it. It was an emotional and confusing day," the source told Radar Online.
According to the insider's story, church "elders" learned Josh "had been touching girls," and decided to take action. He was allegedly called to the front of the church, and an example was made of him.
"They shaved Josh's head in front of everyone," the source said, revealing that Josh cried through the whole thing.
Per the church member's account, Josh didn't want his head shaved. He reportedly said, "I really don't want to do that." Church members allegedly presented Josh with an ultimatum. Eventually, he decided to have his head shaved. The source told Radar Online elders threatened Josh, telling him that if he didn't buzz of his hair, one of his victims would have to.
"To punish him into getting [his head shaved], they threatened her," the source said.
Older men then allegedly surrounded Josh and "laid hands on him and started praying for him." The men then revealed to Josh that he'd be staying with someone from the church, who would help him work through his issues, according to Radar Online.
"Then they told him he was going to stay with this guy in the church for a while and work on becoming stronger and try to get over his demons, like watching porn," the source said.
Following the scandal, Josh's reputation at the church was tarnished the insider said. He was reportedly cut off from hanging out with the other kids who attended the house of worship.
"Josh was forbidden from hanging out with any of the kids or playing games with them," the insider alleged, revealing that he "got in trouble a couple more time."
Josh's alleged in-church punishment occurred long before it became public that he molested five young girls, four of whom were his sisters. In Touch Weekly broke the story in 2015, after obtaining documents from police implicating him. Josh was a teen when the molestation occurred.
Once the story became public, Josh admitted to the crimes. He also eventually admitted that he cheated on wife Anna Duggar, and had a porn addiction. Josh entered treatment at a rehab facility in Illinois. Josh was confirmed to still be in therapy as late as April 2017, though none of his therapy was ever done by a medical professional according to a source.
"Josh is still in counseling after his rehab stay for sex addiction. He is going to a family pastor," a source said at the time. "It's religious counseling, so it's not like he's getting actual help for his issues."
In 2018, Radar Online reported that he secretly returned to the facility in August the year prior. He reportedly ended his therapy in November, claiming he was "cured," though a source said he was "the same guy." Duggar family insiders disagreed.0comments
"He's doing great," the source told Radar Online at the time. "He's really folding into the lifestyle that comes with a new baby. He seems to have made serious changes in his life."