Josh Duggar's defense team is trying to shift blame onto one of his employees who admitted to watching porn on the job

josh duggar
In this Aug. 29, 2014 file photo, Josh Duggar speaks in favor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act at the Arkansas state Capitol in Little Rock, Ark. Associated Press/Danny Johnston
  • Josh Duggar's defense team argued in a new court filing that the child porn case against their client should be tossed.

  • They said federal agents failed to preserve cellphone evidence from one of Duggar's employees.

  • Investigators have said they searched the employee's phone, but found no child pornography.

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In their latest effort to get Josh Duggar's child pornography case tossed out, the former reality-TV star's defense team suggested that authorities should have looked into a different person of interest: one of Duggar's employees.

Duggar, 33, has been accused of receiving and possessing child pornography at the IP address linked to his used car dealership in Arkansas.

Duggar has pleaded not guilty to the charges, and his lawyers complained in an August 20 motion that federal agents "failed to preserve any evidence whatsoever" from the devices of three other people who had access to the wireless internet at Duggar's dealership.

Duggar's team sought to cast blame on a person identified in court documents as Witness #1. Federal agents interviewed Witness #1 in December 2019, roughly one month after authorities first executed a search warrant at the dealership.

According to court documents, federal agents originally designated Witness #1 a "person of interest to the investigation."

Witness #1 told the investigators that he worked at Duggar's dealership, and had even stayed there overnight "without Duggar's knowledge or permission," Duggar's lawyers said.

Witness #1 also "admitted to viewing adult pornography through websites he accessed through the internet on his cellular phone," though he denied viewing child pornography, according to the court filing.

Though federal agents said in their report that they examined Witness #1's cellphone for evidence of child pornography and found "negative results," Duggar's lawyers blasted the agents for not preserving any content or metadata from the phone.

According to the court filing, federal agents also interviewed two other people, identified as Witness #2 and Witness #3, who allowed investigators to search through their phones. Duggar's defense team noted that the agents did not preserve evidence from either phone.

Duggar's team requested that Judge Timothy Brooks dismiss the case against Duggar, due to "the Government's failure to preserve potentially exculpatory evidence."

Duggar's team filed a tranche of motions in recent days regarding the evidence against their client. In one recent motion they asked Brooks to block pictures of Duggar's hands and feet from being used at trial. They also won an effort last week to force prosecutors to obtain more information on the child pornography investigation from two Arkansas police departments.

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