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Josh Duggar trial: Duggar confessed in 2003 to assaulting children, family friend says

(NEXSTAR / KNWA / KFTA) – On the first morning of week two of Josh Duggar’s child pornography trial in Fayetteville, Arkansas, a close family friend who has known the Duggars since before Josh was born represented the prosecution.

Fighting back tears, Bobye Holt testified to a conversation in 2003 in which she claims Duggar confessed to assaulting several underage girls.

Sometimes stopping to gather to talk, Holt described in detail how Duggar told the two sets of parents to touch girls, some up to ten years younger than him, in their “private spaces,” under their ” pants and underwear ‘.

Duggar, who appeared in TLC’s “19 Kids and Counting,” was charged in April with two counts of downloading and possessing child pornography.

Prosecutors last week said they wanted the jury to hear testimony from a friend of the Duggar family who said at a preliminary hearing Monday that Duggar told him in 2003 that he had assaulted four girls. . But Duggar’s defense attorneys argued that Duggar had never been charged and that the allegations had nothing to do with the child pornography case.

U.S. District Judge Timothy Brooks, however, said the testimony was relevant to Duggar’s child pornography case.

“The victims of child pornography in this case are roughly the same age as the victims of the pedophilia offenses committed by the accused,” Brooks’ order said. “Accordingly, the evidence of the prior act is probative of the accused’s sexual interest in minor children and his propensity to exploit young girls.”

Before Holt spoke on Monday, her husband Jim Holt was called out. He detailed a conversation he participated in in 2010 involving Duggar and another witness.

During this conversation, Duggar allegedly asked how to install a Linux partition on a computer.

Justice Department computer expert James Fottrell said on Thursday that an open source Linux operating system and a browser capable of encryption were installed behind a partition on a computer at the used car dealership. where Duggar worked.

The partition essentially split the computer’s hard drive into a public side which was linked to the business and included the tracking program, and a second secret side which used Linux and the browser, experts said.

This allowed anyone using the computer to evade an accountability program installed to report Duggar’s wife to any inappropriate internet activity, such as searching for pornography.

Fottrell said sexually explicit photos and videos of children were found on the Linux side of the computer, the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported.

On Friday, Fottrell provided details obtained from a backup of Duggar’s iPhone, made on a MacBook Pro laptop, which placed the phone in the parking lot on the exact dates and times the illegal material was downloaded, viewed and shared on the dealership’s desktop computer. , KNWA-TV reported in Fayetteville.

Senior Homeland Security forensic analyst James Follett said on Friday that a car receipt naming “Josh” as the sales agent was found behind the bulkhead where child pornography was uploaded, the Democrat reported. Gazette. And the password to access the hidden section was a variation of the passwords Duggar had used on other devices for at least five years.

FILE – In this August 2, 2007 file photo, Michelle Duggar, left, is surrounded by her children and husband Jim Bob, second from left, after the birth of her 17th child in Rogers, Ark. The reality show “19 Kids and Counting” after Duggar brood eldest Josh, 27, became the subject of revelations that as a teenager he fondled four of his sisters. A portrait of a healthy family life, ?? 19 Kids ?? had been TLC’s most-watched series, averaging 3.2 million viewers, until it was taken off the air in May and then officially canceled in July. (AP Photo / Beth Hall, file)

TLC released “19 Kids and Counting” in 2015 following revelations that Duggar assaulted four of his sisters and a babysitter. Duggar’s parents said he confessed to the touching and apologized.

In 2015, Duggar publicly apologized for his porn addiction and cheating on his wife, calling himself “the greatest hypocrite of all time.”

Duggar’s trial began when his father, Jim Bob Duggar, ran in a special election for a vacant seat in the Northwestern Arkansas State Senate. Jim Bob Duggar has also featured prominently on the TLC show and previously served at Arkansas House. The primary election for the open seat is December 14.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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