Today's Paper Latest stories Obits Newsletters Traffic Weather Puzzles/games
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
story.lead_photo.caption Josh Duggar, executive director of FRC Action, speaks in favor the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act at the Arkansas state Capitol in Little Rock, Ark., Friday, Aug. 29, 2014. - Photo by AP / DANNY JOHNSTON

SPRINGDALE -- Josh Duggar resigned as director of a conservative lobbying organization Thursday after the disclosure of allegations of sexual misconduct when he was a teenager.

ADVERTISEMENT

More headlines

Duggar, 27, of Washington is the oldest son of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar of Tontitown, stars of the popular reality TV show 19 Kids and Counting, which airs on the TLC Network. He has appeared on the show since he was a teenager.

Jim Bob Duggar was state representative from 1999 until 2003 and a candidate for the U.S. Senate.

Josh Duggar released a statement to People magazine Thursday and later posted on his Facebook page that he resigned from his position at the Family Research Council, a conservative lobbying group. The statement said in part:

"Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret. I hurt others, including my family and close friends. I confessed this to my parents who took several steps to help me address the situation. We spoke with the authorities where I confessed my wrongdoing, and my parents arranged for me and those affected by my actions to receive counseling. I understood that if I continued down this wrong road that I would end up ruining my life."

Family Research Council president Tony Perkins released a statement later Thursday confirming the resignation.

"Today Josh Duggar made the decision to resign his position as a result of previously unknown information becoming public concerning events that occurred during his teenage years," Perkins said in the statement. "Josh believes that the situation will make it difficult for him to be effective in his current work. We believe this is the best decision for Josh and his family at this time. We will be praying for everyone involved."

The resignation follows two days of media reports of allegations Duggar fondled five girls in 2002 and 2003, but the incidents weren't investigated until after the statute of limitations on the alleged crimes had expired. InTouch magazine first reported on the story Tuesday.

Details in a 2006 Springdale police investigation report match with the statements given to People by Duggar and his parents. The Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette acquired a copy of the report late Wednesday through the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act. The report is heavily redacted and doesn't include identifying information regarding the children involved.

The report only became public because of an accident involving a long-forgotten letter found in a book, according to the report.

Springdale police began looking into the case in December 2006 when officers were notified about a letter containing allegations of improper touching in the Duggar home. The report says the letter, written 31/2 years earlier, had been found in a book lent by a family friend of the Duggars to someone else.

According the the report, an investigator identified as "W. Taylor" called Michelle Duggar the day the tip was received and was told the family was in Chicago to appear on Oprah Winfrey's television show and wouldn't be back in Arkansas until the following Monday.

The report says staff members for Harpo Studios, producer of Winfrey's show, received an email that warned of the allegations. Studio staff members faxed a copy of the email to the Arkansas State Police on the same day as the anonymous tip was received, according to the report.

The email said, in part, "I think you should know the truth before they make a complete fool of you and your show. They have been on TV before and come across as a perfect family, which couldn't be further from the truth," according to a summary in the police report.

Taylor and Springdale detective Darrell Hignite began interviews in the case Dec. 12.

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar told police they learned of a person improperly touching people at their home in 2002 and 2003, according to that Springdale Police Department report. Victims also told police they had been improperly touched, sometimes while they slept. The instances happened over a period of several months.

The person accused admitted to the actions, was disciplined and eventually sent to Little Rock for counseling for three months in March 2003. The decision to send the person to counseling was made after Jim Bob Duggar consulted with leaders of his church.

After returning from counseling, the person was taken by Jim Bob Duggar to an Arkansas State Police corporal. That officer gave the perpetrator "a very stern talk" but didn't report the matter to child-abuse investigators, the report quotes Jim Bob Duggar as saying.

On Dec. 20 of that year, investigators concluded the statute of limitations had expired, precluding any possible sexual-assault charges. The case was sent to the Washington County prosecutor for review. Circuit Judge John Threet, a deputy prosecutor at the time, said he didn't recall the case but wouldn't be allowed under the law to comment on the matter even if he did.

Investigators also filed a "family in need of services" affidavit with Washington County Juvenile Court, the report says.

The sealed Washington County Circuit Court file for "Josh Duggar vs. the Arkansas Department of Human Services," CV 07-921, was found in 2007 by a Northwest Arkansas Times reporter, who now works for the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. A trial in that case took place Aug. 6, 2007, according to notes attached to the file. Sealed cases aren't supposed to be left in public view, but the Duggar case file had been left in a stack of routine court filings at the circuit clerk's office. The reporter saw no other information on the case at the time.

Amy Webb, spokesman for the state Department of Human Services, said she couldn't comment on any case involving a minor and couldn't confirm or deny there had been a case, she said Wednesday.

Both Josh and Jim Bob Duggar were asked about the case in 2007, and both declined to comment.

Messages sent Wednesday and Thursday to Josh Duggar through social media weren't returned.

Messages to Jim Bob Duggar left through Facebook and email through the Duggar family's official website also weren't returned. A caller identifying himself as Josiah Duggar, another child of the Duggars, called to ask what the request for an interview was about, and said any questions would have to be answered by his father.

A call about the allegations against Josh Duggar to TLC's studio headquarters in Silver Spring, Md. was transferred to the legal department of the parent company, Discovery Communications, also of Silver Spring. A message left there wasn't returned Wednesday or Thursday.

A special two-hour episode of the Duggars' show on May 5 drew 3.6 million viewers. The popular series featured Josh Duggar as a teenager. Since the show began in 2008, Josh Duggar grew up, married and moved to Washington.

Metro on 05/22/2015

Print Headline: Oldest of TV's 19 Kids admits to wrongdoing/Josh Duggar resigns position in D.C.

Sponsor Content

Comments

You must be signed in to post comments
  • mrcharles
    May 22, 2015 at 10:23 a.m.

    Here we go. Now the unbelievers will attack a family with a mission from God. I have already been told that remember when Bill O'Riley said Britney Spears sister got preganant out of the holy state of matrimony that her parents were pin heads cause their daughter was allowed to do a wrong. Then people without common sense tried to say that Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska, and I have been there and could see Russia, that her family was a pin head since her daughter got pregnant. Now the left without any empathy at all will accuse the Duggars of being pin heads . Anybody with common sense though, will see there is a difference .
    I believe there is demon activity in NW Arkansas as evidenced by Rep Harris observation of demons in those adopted children he tried to help when he passed on custody to those I cant remember there name . Mike Masterson speaks of Angels, so there may be a war going on up there with spiritual beings and they raise lots of pigs up there. It may be perhaps, though I have no evidence of it, that demons were the cause of young Mr. Duggar's momentary lapse of reason, I would suggest Rev Floyd now President of Southern Baptist cast out all those demons into some of those pigs up there and drive them into beaver lake to drown. I think we should give young Mr. Duggar the benefit of the doubt and pray for his repentance, which I am sure has happened with him being raised in a Godly family. Unbelivers should study how this plays out by a Godly family coming together and praying for forgiveness and moving on with the understanding that only God can Judge, not mere humans .Faith works even in adversity.
    And Mr. Duggar the parent has important matters to attend to in fighting the LBGT or whatever they go by Agenda to destroy America . I expect all Christians to stand up for young Mr. Duggar and his family against the expected onslaught by the radical atheistic left.

  • BEARTRAP919
    May 22, 2015 at 11:30 a.m.

    The Devil made him do it. The Devil makes all of us do Bad things, The Devil made me vote for Republicans for Years, Finally The Angels Showed me the Light and Now that has all Changed

  • carpenterretired
    May 22, 2015 at 12:47 p.m.

    Well the Duggar family have always been good Christian Evangelical pillars of their church and excelled in public piety and been good republican role models along with Rep Harris for conservatives. There fore these guys may just be casualties in the war on Christianity that the Huck can use in a speech.

  • JakeTidmore
    May 22, 2015 at 1:17 p.m.

    Not. One. Word. Of. Remorse. For . The. VICTIMS!!!

    Christianity has enough scabs like the Duggars and Floyd and Harris attached to it and folks get all high and mighty defending this self-righteous bozos. Ugh. Scrape these blasphemous barnacles of bovine brownies off its surface and maybe real Christianity might have a chance to shine again.

  • GoBigRed
    May 22, 2015 at 1:20 p.m.

    Aren't these children home schooled? has anyone notified Children's Services?

  • GCW
    May 22, 2015 at 1:24 p.m.

    He should switch parties and claim to be a closet liberal Democrat. Oprah would put them back on her show and ratings would soar. Late night talk show hosts would get applause every time they mentioned his name.

  • FreeSpiritMan
    May 22, 2015 at 4:25 p.m.

    These are "Quiverfull" people, just google it and read for yourself how they believe.
    The Huckster believes the same way , women are to slaves to GOD through their obedience to their husbands. And pump out a new born about every other year or so.

  • mrcharles
    May 22, 2015 at 6:14 p.m.

    DOESNT IT BRING A TEAR TO YOUR EYE TO KNOW THAT REV HUCKABEE AND OTHER STATE REPUBLICANS HAVE DONE THE RIGHT THING AND COME IN SUPPORT OF JOSH DUGGAR. I HOPE OUR STATE STAYS REPUBLICAN FOREVER SO WE CAN KEEP OUR MORAL LEADERS AND MOVE TO TAKE OUR COUNTRY BACK TO THE GOOD OLE DAYS OF LITTLE RICKY NELSON AND LUCY & DESI ARNEZ AND WITH THE POLITICAL LEANINGS OF HOME TOWN PEOPLE LIKE THOSE ON THE ANDY GRIFFIN SHOW, ANDY, BARNEY, OPIE AND GOMER.

  • JakeTidmore
    May 22, 2015 at 9:40 p.m.

    Am sure every Republican family would love to have Josh over to spend an unsupervised evening with their daughters and children. He'll teach them that fine ol' hymn whose words go "Trust & obey; for there's no other way."

  • wolfman
    May 22, 2015 at 11:13 p.m.

    Mr Charles is blaming politics lol what a joke. Josh is a perv. He admitted it himself

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT