The Duggar Family: 3 Major Lies Exposed During Josh Duggar’s Trial

The hits to the Duggar family’s brand keep coming. Following Josh Duggar’s trial, a lot has happened. Local police cited Jana Duggar for endangering the welfare of a child, Jim Bob Duggar lost his senate race, and son-in-law, Derick Dillard, compared Jim Bob to human traffickers. If we are honest, things started to unravel for the Duggar family long before federal marshals arrested Josh on two child pornography charges in April 2021. Still, the trial seemed to destroy their carefully constructed facade. The trial process also exposed three major lies.

Josh Duggar’s trial revealed that Jim Bob and Michelle lied about the severity of the sexual abuse inside their home 

Justin Gelfand and the rest of Josh’s defense team wanted to prevent the prosecution from bringing up Josh’s prior sexual abuse scandal during the trial. While District Judge Timothy L. Brooks heard arguments about the evidence until the trial’s official start date, he eventually allowed the information to be presented to the jury. 

Testimony from both Jim and Bobye Holt revealed that the sexual abuse inside the Duggar family home was far more extensive than Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar claimed during their 2015 interview with Megyn Kelly. The Holts revealed that the incidents were widespread and that Josh had touched his siblings inappropriately multiple times. Jim Bob and Michelle once claimed Josh’s victims were initially unaware anything had happened to them. The Holts revealed that Jim Bob and Michelle’s past statements were untrue. They testified that at least one of the victims reported an incident. 

The Duggar family claimed there was never any federal raid on their property 

Back in November 2019, reports surfaced that federal agents carried out a raid on Duggar-owned property. While the Duggars let the rumor circulate briefly, they eventually issued a statement. In their report, Jim Bob and Michelle claimed, “To the best of our knowledge, it’s also not true that any member of our family is the target of any investigation of any kind.” They went on to call the reports “fake news.” 

Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar sit for an interview with Today, years before Josh Duggar's trial would unravel their media brand
Michelle Duggar and Jim Bob Duggar | Peter Kramer/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

The 2019 raid by the Department of Homeland Security was what led to Josh Duggar’s arrest and subsequent conviction. The couple was aware that federal agents had visited the car lot owned and operated by Josh Duggar. Josh, along with his wife and children, was living on Jim Bob and Michelle’s property at the time of the raid.

Bobye Holt also exposed a failed courtship 

Bobye Holt served as a witness for the prosecution during Josh Duggar’s trial. Aside from outlining everything she knew about Josh’s molestation scandal, Holt exposed a serious lie about the Duggar family’s courtships. At the very least, Duggar family followers believe she did.

When fans first met the Duggars, they explained that they didn’t believe in dating; rather, they opted for courtships for purity purposes. In 2008, when Josh began courting his wife, Anna Duggar, the family behaved as if it was the only love interest Josh had ever had. They spun a narrative that made it seem like courtships were a more wholesome option. Holt revealed that Josh had a rather serious relationship long before he courted Anna, completely circumventing the alleged point of courtship.  

Holt explained that Josh had courted her eldest daughter when they were just teens during her testimony. As Holt explained, their relationship wasn’t just puppy love, either. She said the “plan” was for the duo to get married. The relationship ended when Josh confessed to molesting several siblings and a fifth unnamed victim. They were both 14 years old at the time.

Josh Duggar speaks during the 42nd annual Conservative Political Action Conference
Josh Duggar | Kris Connor/Getty Images

The terminology Holt used seemed to imply that courtships may have been arranged by the parents. At the very least, it seems like they strongly encouraged the couple. Duggar family critics have long suspected that was the case. Holt’s testimony appears to be the closest thing to confirmation that they’ll ever get, though. 

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