Saying he hopes “to move on to a life without all of this”, Josh Duggar left the courthouse on Tuesday with his wife, Anna, shortly after he tried to have his child porn case dismissed.
The embattled reality star was held in contempt of court for failing to appear on a contempt bench warrant, a violation of his previous contempt conviction for having disclosed personal information about a minor in 2008.
Duggar was represented by Lawrence Silverman in the hearing before Magistrate Judge Kristi Posa.
He was sentenced in May to one year’s probation, after pleading guilty to having surreptitiously filmed a girl as young as five-years-old to see if she could perform oral sex.
Cooperating with police during their investigation, he was released from jail on 10 July, but could face a five-year prison sentence.
In court on Tuesday, Silverman argued that Duggar’s 2016 guilty plea should be thrown out because the judge presiding over his original case hadn’t properly considered Duggar’s mental health during her sentencing, meaning Duggar was no longer legally guilty.
Deputy Attorney General Erik Stanley shot back that the court had already considered Duggar’s mental health and sentenced him, and the deputy attorney general was allowed to add that his case had even been moved due to “fear of violence and chaos”.
Silverman also argued that the charges weren’t “as serious as they have been made out to be”, but the deputy attorney general replied that there was more to the case than Duggar had been letting on.
Anna Duggar sat by Duggar’s side throughout most of the hearing, at one point kneeling beside her husband as he cried.
She was seen giving a stern warning to him from the courtroom, telling him “I will protect you.”
Their former child star son, Josh Duggar, and his wife Anna Duggar leave court after a hearing. Chris Seward/AP
Anna also clapped after her husband received the contempt of court order for violating it.
A spokesperson for TLC confirmed in July that they have not decided if they will re-approve the Duggars for their reality series, 19 Kids and Counting.
After the child porn charges went public in May, TLC dropped the Duggar family from its popular reality show and is not planning on making any updates to the family’s programming this year.
Following his latest court appearance, Duggar has remained largely mum on social media.
He has since deleted every photograph of him and Anna from his Instagram account, though he has continued to post his niece Savannah’s photos, which may signal that he will be promoting the show when it returns.
Georgia State Police (Wikimedia Commons)
Josh Duggar is currently living in a gated home with his wife and three of their five children after being released from a faith-based rehab facility for treatment on 10 July.
Lived in stone walls and several-feet high fences topped with barbed wire, Duggar and his wife Anna had to seal the fence surrounding their property before Joshua started his new life in order to avoid any surveillance.
In 2008, a federal investigation found Duggar had uploaded a seven-minute video featuring the five-year-old child in 2007. He also had admitted that he had “done wrong.”
Anna Duggar has since moved out of her marital home and is residing in a rental with one of their younger children.
The couple have been in a long-term relationship for 11 years, but have still been faced with scepticism and criticism, especially as Duggar is not legally and legally married to Anna.
As a result, Duggar and Anna often share public holidays together and visit together with their families and friends.
Their relationship has also been criticised for not being equal.
In an interview with People Magazine earlier this year, Anna said, “When my children, while they’re little, started out getting about 9-ounce diapers, I would say to Josh I want to get my own dirty diapers. We would have different opinions.
“He knows what we think.”