Josh Duggar’s sentencing date has been set. The former TLC personality is facing 40 years in prison after being found guilty of possessing and receiving child pornography. Josh’s sentencing date has been scheduled for April 5, 2022, per a report by The Sun. The father of seven faces a potential 20 years in prison for each of the counts.
Josh’s lawyers recently filed a motion seeking an acquittal of the guilty verdict, a dismissal of the possession charge, or a new trial. His legal team claimed that there was no evidence that Josh personally looked at the child pornography discovered on a desktop computer. Prosecutors responded by stating that “the evidence of the defendant’s guilt is clear and overwhelming.”
Josh’s lawyers argued that prosecutors “failed to adduce any evidence that Duggar ‘knew that the visual depictions were of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct’”—a necessary requirement for conviction on the two counts.
They stated—“The evidence at trial established that certain files allegedly found on the HP desktop computer were never viewed by any user of the computer and that all the files at issue had been deleted shortly after being downloaded.”
“The jury had no evidence that Duggar personally viewed any specific portion of any of the files allegedly found on the computer.”
The federal prosecutors filed a response on February 11.
The documents read—“The government did not need to provide evidence that he personally viewed the material to convict him of receiving and possessing child pornography, it only had to prove that he knew the material was of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct.”
The government filing stated that Michele Bush, Josh’s expert witness, proved that “child sexual abuse material was downloaded to a password-protected Linux partition on his computer using two different programs and he knew the programs existed on his computer.”
The documents state—“There can be no doubt—let alone a reasonable one—that the defendant knew the visual depictions he received and possessed were of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct.”
Josh’s legal team argued that prosecutors failed to present exculpatory evidence and that a new trial was warranted, because they were unable to call Caleb Williams, a Wholesale Motorcars employee, to the stand. Lawyers claimed that Caleb had access to the desktop computer during “relevant time periods” and that authorities “failed to meaningfully investigate the possibility that anyone other than Duggar may have committed the crimes charged.” Josh’s legal team alleged that Caleb regularly used the computer during the time period leading up to the pornography bust and that federal prosecutors “disregarded” this element of the case. Prosecutors called the theory that Caleb committed the crimes “pure fiction” as he wasn’t even in Arkansas at the time.
The government lawyers also claimed that Caleb was allowed to speak out in court, but Josh’s team made a “strategic” decision not to call him to the stand. They also stated that he “was not identified as a possible suspect or witness by law enforcement.”
Josh’s lawyers also took issue with the prosecutor’s forensics expert, claiming that the pro had “no knowledge about how geolocation, EXIF data, or GPS coordinates work.” Government lawyers fired back that their expert was “thoroughly qualified.” Prosecutors also requested that the court shoot down Josh’s team’s request for a dismissal of the possession charge.
The court filing read— “The defendant, for his part, claimed that someone else did it, but his attempts to scapegoat others collapsed under the mildest scrutiny.”
“His own expert largely agreed with government’s explanation of the facts and, when given the chance to rebut evidence placing the defendant at the computer, conceded that she could not.”
“Further, when given the chance to substantiate his speculative defense with other witnesses, the defendant instead rested his case. The Court should deny the defendant’s motion in its entirety.”
A judge has not yet ruled on the filings.
Nancy Zhāng is an Entertainment Blogger for All About The Tea. Nancy covers hot topics, recaps and celeb news. She loves to multi-task as a writer and a private chef. She received a B.S. in Mass Communications from LSU. Nancy’s married and the proud mom of 2 German Shepherds.