Josh Duggar is set to go to trial later this year, stemming from an arrest over alleged possession of child pornography, but his lawyers are now attempting to have the charges dropped. According to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Duggar's attorneys have filed legal motions to have the case thrown out. They claim that authorities "failed to preserve potentially exculpatory evidence" during searches that were previously carried out at Duggar's used car lot in Springfield, Arkansas.
The defense alleges that multiple people had access to Duggar's work computer, which was found to contain child pornography, and that investigators did not properly preserve related evidence. Notably, government officials have stated that "no evidence of criminal activity" was discovered on electronic devices belonging to witnesses who were questioned and searched. Duggar's lawyers also argue that the case should be dismissed due to what they claim was improper appointment of the two acting secretaries of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security during the time Duggar was being investigated.
Remember when the GAO and federal judges found that Trump’s DHS acting leaders were appointed unlawfully?
Josh Duggar’s lawyers just cited that in a bid to boot his child porn indictment. https://t.co/zY9xv7COdE— Adam Klasfeld (@KlasfeldReports) August 20, 2021
Duggar's lawyers did not stop there, as they also filed motions to suppress evidence they claim was acquired by misleading means. The defense alleges that a judge was not fully filled in on which files investigators were able to download from the computer in Duggar's car lot office. The attorneys also claim that investigators waited longer than they should have to execute their warrant, causing it to become stale.
Finally, the defense also wants all of Duggar's statements to authorities to be suppressed due to his phone being taken from him before he could phone his lawyer. They add in this motion that he was questioned without a lawyer present. Duggar's lawyers also included a motion to suppress evidence photos that were taken of the former reality TV star's feet and hands.
The former 19 Kids and Counting star was taken into custody by sheriffs in Arkansas on April 28, with no word on the cause of the arrest at the time. The following day he was transferred to the custody of U.S. Marshals and formally charged with possession of child pornography. Duggar pleaded "not guilty" to the charges, and remained in custody until a bond hearing.
Duggar has since been released on bond and is staying with a family friend. He is prohibited from having contact with minors, other than his own children. The father-of-six is reportedly allowed "unlimited contact" with his kids, however, his wife — who is currently pregnant with the couple's seventh child — must be present for the visits. His trial is set to begin in November.
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, you can contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or go to rainn.org.