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Our Response To Josh’s Sentencing

Our Response To Josh’s Sentencing

Yesterday we learned that Josh was given a 151 month sentence in federal prison for his crime of CSAM. The last several weeks and months have been difficult emotionally. Yesterday was another one of those hard days. We are neither rejoicing nor disappointed by the sentence, but we are thankful it’s finally over. The Bible clearly states that God effects justice and vengeance through the governing authorities. Though some believe Josh should have received a greater sentence and still fewer believe he should have received a lighter sentence, God has carried out his vengeance today for his unspeakable criminal activity. Until now, he has yet to be held accountable to the extent necessary to cause change in his dangerous pattern of behavior. It is unfortunate, but it seems that it may take spending over a decade in federal prison, and still more on probation, for Josh to have any potential for rehabilitation to the point he can safely live in society again. Hopefully, Josh can actually begin to get treatment and begin to work toward a lifestyle where he is less likely to reoffend. If for nothing else, the notoriety of this case has hopefully contributed to the deterrence of potential offenders and will help protect children by decreasing the demand for CSAM. We continue to love Josh and his family and will be there for them however we can.

Photo credit: Carles Rabada on Unsplash

The photos above are considered the property of the Dillard Family and may only be used with their written permission. Please request permission to use the photos.


  1. Trina

    This response is perfect for a terrible situation. I hope you continue to heal and live in love with your beautiful family.

    • K

      Your family is resilient and your response was God inspired and healthy. I appreciate your honesty, as a women that testified against her own father for sexual crimes while living in a small town-I see the situation from many sides. God loves all the people in this situation. Praying for Anna and their children. I respect your parents Godly care in child rearing and pray for them as well. Adult children make their own choices.

    • RKHarm

      PEDO’s have a HIGH Rate of continuing the same activities after serving a prison term. They are EVIL, not sick. Sickness can be cured, Evil cannot. How do I know this? 30 years in Law Enforcement.

      • guest

        You are right. I hate when I see people refer to them as being sick. There is evil in some people

      • fisher patty

        I agree with you – but I Never hear anything about the people that actually committed these horrible acts with children. Why isn’t there an outrage over this?

  2. Helena

    Beautiful response.

    • Tom

      Thanks for speaking up. You wrote a perfect response.

  3. AN Observer

    That statement is exactly how I feel about the situation. It should never have been allowed to escalate to this point, but it’s finally been stopped. Your parents, your father in particular, failed all of you, Josh and all his victims. I hope your parents have learned something. The way your father stormed out of court yesterday was very telling. You are wise to disassociate yourself from him, disappointing as it is to have to do that with a parent. Remember, it’s not a reflection on you, it’s a show of your strength and resilience and knowing right from wrong, danger from safety for your own family. Continue moving forward and building a life of your own making, the one you’ve wanted and deserve. Wishing you nothing but good fortune.

    • Lola

      Jim Bob stormed out of the court house? Where did you see this?

      • Ames

        His exit from the courthouse is on the news.

      • Betsy

        It was on film as well as talked about by the media outlets who were there.

      • Sarah Fruge

        I did not see Jim Bob storm out of the court room, on film. I saw him walk out and avoid answering any questions from the media. He has a right to privacy.

    • Tami

      He did not storm out. I was heartbroken for Jim Bob when I saw him in that video. He is going through so much and doesn’t have much support.

  4. Kellie morris

    Very well said. It’s time for him to become accountable for his horrible actions. I will continue to pray for him, his wife, and children.

  5. CWorkman

    Praying for comfort as you process this latest news and continue with your healing.

    • Julie weir

      You have weathered this horrific storm with grace & dignity. Love to all of you who were affected by all of this. ❤️

    • Lenay Y

      Truly you are both gracious and are in my prayers for continued healing.

  6. Claire

    Bless you both for speaking the truth. My heart goes out to you and your immediate and extended family.

  7. Jessie

    Perfectly said!
    Prayers for your family & congrats to Derrick on passing the bar & on your move! <3

  8. Jennifer

    May you and your family continue to heal throughout all this.

  9. Donna charpentier

    I’m so heart broken. Praying joshua has a change. We love you with all our hearts. In Him Donna .

    • Team Jill & jinger

      So much love to you and your family ❤ My heart both rejoices with and breaks for you. What has been done to you, Jill, by your family and by Josh specifically is nothing short of awful, and we know your journey has not yet brought you fully out of that darkness. But please be encouraged by the knowledge that you have shown your ever-growing strength as well as your compassion through all of this. You both are protecting yourselves and your CHILDREN as well as your marriage by putting up and enforcing healthy boundaries. And while as Christians we should strive to model ourselves after Christ, I feel compelled to say something about Forgiveness:
      G-d’s forgiveness and man’s forgiveness are not meant to be identical; that’s what makes His forgiveness, grace, & mercy so awesome (awesome in the literal sense). Forgiveness extended by a person doesn’t mean the erasure of the forgiven one’s sins against the other. We can offer no absolution to one another, as that is G-d’s place alone. But earthly forgiveness can still be a beautiful thing, and I think you’ve done a really great job of modeling that. You have not made any excuses or allowances for another’s wrongdoings, and I’ve seen you time and time again shine a light where dirty deeds are being done in the darkness with no accountability. Good on you! I feel hopeful knowing that the beautiful new life you’re cooking up will be raised in love and safety and security! We pray for you all, for peace and healing each day. May G-d continue to bless you and yours!

    • S J

      Donna, why you think he will change now? He didn’t before, or before that, or before that… Too many people have counted on him “changing” too many times and were deceived by him instead. Even now he isn’t admitting he did anything wrong and is going to file an appeal. He’s not showing any signs of changing and you can see that the people closest to him aren’t demanding that he change either. They all wrote letters to the court for some reason, claiming how wonderful he is. Uh huh.

  10. Christina N

    Hugs to all of you. I know this has been hard for y’all! If he goes to Seagoville, he’ll be an hour away from me in Dallas.
    I will continue praying for Anna and her 7 children.

  11. Lindsey May

    The way people talk about this on online forums really confuses. People wish horrible things on Josh, hoping he gets the crap beaten out of him in prison, that justice can’t fully be served, which in a worldly sense it probably can’t. But I know people who believe that such crimes as his should be met with capital punishment. If I were to point that out on these forums they would implode.
    Society doesn’t believe people like Josh can be rehabilitated. They think they’re born that way and can’t be changed.
    Final justice is in the hands of the Lord.

    • Karen Anderson

      There is a great deal of data about child predators. The recidivism rate is extremely high, indicating that this is one of the most difficult perversions to cure or control. His children must be evaluated by experienced professionals to determine if they have been harmed by him (which is highly likely). Surely you can understand the desire for his physical punishment by others. The very thought of helpless, innocent children being sexually abused is beyond unthinkable.

      • Lindsey may

        No I can totally understand desiring physical punishment for such crimes. I’m inclined to be one of them.
        I think the real question I was asking wasn’t expressed well, and would probably be better fit for a different type of forum, one more philosophically bent.
        I understand wishing harm on Josh. I even understand wishing death on him. But I was always under the impression that the reason for being apposed to Capital Punishment is that it is wrong to wish death on people, and that it is believed to be wrong for the same reason that murder is. So more my question was if that is why capital punishment is wrong, is it wrong to wish death on someone in any context?

      • Lindsey may

        I can definitely understand. My point is that no one should be wishing death on him.

        • April

          — @Lindsey May No one except Jim Bob, who famously made this statement about 20 years ago: “Rape and incest represent heinous crimes and, as such, should be treated as capital crimes.”

    • Laura Knight

      Pedophiles have a disease and will never be healed from it. It’s no different than an alcoholic or substance addiction. It will always be there. I don’t believe, even after prison, that he can change. It will be a lifelong struggle. Anna and the family need to understand this. God bless them all.

      • jaye-lnn f

        im sorry but pedophilia is not a disease, im a adult survivor of severe sexual/emotional/physical/neglect, it is a matter of control, repeated most times due to it having been done to the perp. you got a choice and it comes early trust me i went thru this- whether or no to exert that very same sort of behavior on another. I chose not to and in fact im so against it that i will intervene if i see a child being hurt and have. mental illness i do have from my abuse but i definitely think the choice to hurt another like that is often up to the individual. josh duggar made some extremely bad choices at some point he will have to answer for him with his almighty and how will he or jim bob and michelle respond when asked about all this? thats my question, god bless

    • Sherry

      The BLOOD of Christ can restore him, but only if he wants it! I’m so ever grateful that my Heavenly Father never gave up on me!

  12. Vicci mauldin

    This is just totally a very sad situation. But God’s will has been cast. I pray that Josh will open up his heart to his crimes (sins) and let God change him. But only God knows the final outcome. Anna and the children need to be the main focus now and be taken care of and let God take care of Josh while still loving Josh and praying for him. Only God knows Josh’s heart and can change him if Josh so desires to change.

    On another note, I want to say how proud I am of you two standing. I do not need all the details, but you both are adults now and can think for your own selves and live your life together as you think God wants you to do. Prayers for a smooth safe delivery of your new son. Know that there are a lot of people out here who love all of your family and pray for you. May God continue to bless your precious family.

  13. Joy

    I have a brother who abused children and I feel for your family as you navigate through this. It is very hard to be the truth teller in the family dynamic as you are made an example of and shunned to warn others. Remember you are modelling to the next generation that you can stand on the broken chains and thrive. You won’t either and die without them, this example will show there is hope in leaving the toxic dynamic

  14. Jessi

    Your response touched my heart. You stand on the truth yet with love.

  15. Angelyn

    This is heartbreaking all the way around. For you, for your parents, for Anna and her children your siblings and nephews and nieces. People don’t get it and have so much to say. I’m praying for you and your family that God can give some kind of peace to u all. ✝️

  16. Sandy

    Well when he has a 3 month old baby being victimized I believe hes just to far gone sicko. He will come out learning from other cons how not to get caught I pray next time it’s not one of his nieces or nephews proud could be so keep loving your pedro brother we do live in Arkansas where some believe it’s ok to love one another that way. I was born to wash your hands with ppl like that that’s the best thing dont give him chance to re victimize anyone else again in the family.

  17. Mary

    From what I’ve seen of Josh Duggar through the years, my observation of him is a master of manipulation. His family has given him so many passes for his bad behavior that he had no fear of ever being held accountable for his actions. I have to be honest, I wish he had been given the maximum sentence. Someday Josh will meet his maker and will have to answer directly to God for his despicable acts. All the dress codes and restrictions around girls didn’t make a bit of difference in Josh’s upbringing. My prayers go out to all victims of abuse. Jill, you have a beautiful family of almost 5…. try to move on the best you can. God Bless.

    • Laura Knight

      Amen, you said it all in a nutshell.

    • GG

      Agree w/you Mary, and also troubling is the way his lawyers have already argued for his right to view adult p*rn in the future! Like they’re planning for what he’s going to do when he’s out, which could end up being the same terrible path as before. I also think there’s been a lot more to his “viewing habits” in previous years than came out in court.

  18. Meli

    Jill and Derick,
    When you read scripture it clearly states when one does not and is not a lover of the truth God gives him over to his desires. Over and over 2 Thess 2:9-12, Romans 1:28-32, Romans 1:24,Romans1:18. Anyhow there are more in Timothy and in the Old Testament. I just can’t recall at the moment.

    My point is I truly believe God has given Josh over to a depraved mind because he did not love the truth or find it convenient.

    But of course how could he love the truth when the “truth” he was given by his parents was a false doctrine? Hypocrisy by his parents is not truth. You cannot serve God and money.(Jimbob) You will love one and hate the other. Josh’s model of truth was itself depraved and has continued to be depraved.

    Josh is an adult responsible for his own choices. He knew and chose his depravity and has remained unrepentant. He rejected the truth for a lie.

    Josh did not choose the lie in a vacuum. Just as Anna is choosing to believe a lie. In stubbornness and not wanting to know the truth because it’s not convenient to her Anna is choosing to not love the truth and is in danger of being turned over. Sounds extreme and devoid of love and kindness considering being brought up in a cult. And yet the same goes for Josh.
    Divorce is not convenient. Getting a job to support yourself is not convenient. The task of caring for 7 kids alone is not convenient. Acknowledging your husband is depraved by evil is not convenient. Changing the beliefs you were told is not convenient. (Romans 1:28) Anna is suppressing the truth as with many of the Duggars. Living on your own without Daddy’s help is inconvenient. It is simply easier for your siblings to believe your dad’s rhetoric and lies at this point than it is to love the truth. As you know to be separate in your truth is difficult and painful. Being blamed and rejected for loving the truth is inconvenient.

    “Suppress the truth” means to hold it down, to stifle it, to bury it so that it can be ignored. Because the knowledge of God is everywhere to be seen and considered, man must hold it down. He must take steps to keep this knowledge out of his mind and his consciousness.

    Anyhow, because you and Jill love the truth your light will not be hidden. It may never reach every member of Jill’s immediate family but it will to others seeking the truth. Jill is NOT responsible for her siblings. They need to seek truth for themselves. They need to love truth for themselves. By you and Jill loving the truth you will be an example.

    Isaiah 42:6. “I am the Lord, I have called You in righteousness,
    I will also hold You by the hand and watch over You,
    And I will appoint You as a covenant to the people,
    As a light to the nations, To open blind eyes,
    To bring out prisoners from the dungeon
    And those who dwell in darkness from the prison.

    Keep practicing the truth.

    John 3:21
    But whoever practices the truth comes into the Light, so that it may be seen clearly that what he has done has been accomplished in God.”

    To Jill specifically, remember this God rejoices in the least we can do.

    If all you can do is rise in the morning and give the little you have to your children or husband it’s okay.
    Even when you have little faith, and can only whisper help me God it’s okay.
    Even when you are overwhelmed with emotions and suffer ptsd and other trauma related symptoms it’s ok

    Remember the widow. In her times being a widow was a dire situation. Poverty covers many things including emotional trauma.

    The Widow’s Offering

    41 Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. 42 But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents.

    43 Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. 44 They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.”

    When you live your truth and your light even though it might not seem that bright it pleases God. Even in your poverty of spirit when it is very difficult it pleases God.

    Jill tremendous responsibility was put on you for your siblings growing up. It was morbidly unhealthy , and unrighteous. Your responsibility is not to them. I cannot stress it enough. God will be with them.

    Thanks for reading my email.


    • Lorri

      God has given Josh over to a depraved mind?

      It sounds like you’re saying that God gave up and enabled him to commit a vile crime against children.

      This is on Josh. I really don’t understand your comment.

    • cathy

      Do you know this family? Do you know personally what Josh has done and not done to repent? Nobody but he and God know.
      I think it is repulsive what he has done, but God will forgive him if he ask, and truly means it.
      God is loving, forgiving and kind.

  19. JPC


  20. godly-young-widow

    Thank you for sharing that, and bits of your journey. Continued prayers for your own healing and wisdom.

  21. Jessica

    Your statement is really powerful, reading it it really felt like your both spent the last few months praying for God’s will to be done as well as the ability to except what ever was done. I will continue to pray for you.

  22. Tina

    Your response is the same response everyone should have. Perfectly said!! He will now be punished and finally held accountable for his actions. I pray he gets the help he needs so when he does get out, he is a changed Man. I also pray for his sweet wife and kids. They are suffering now for his poor choices. I also pray his wife and kids truly get the help they need to heal. Praying for you all had well. Thanks for being a voice and speaking out for those who can’t. Praying for a smooth and easy delivery for your new sweet boy as well!!

  23. Dee

    Good day,

    I wanted to commend you on your measured response to your brother’s sentencing. He is still your brother and you love him. The love of family does not turn on or off like a light switch. You can love someone, want them to acknowledge their wrong doing and get treatment, even when finding their actions deplorable. It is also possible to love someone, while not “liking” them. When you are in the public eye, every statement, every look, every thing you do is scrutinized to the nth degree. Keep each other safe, be kind, attentive parents, treat people well and you will go far in life, and have no regrets.

  24. Regina

    Prayers for all!

  25. Lisa Kroulik

    God bless you~ It was a sad day, but I see Christ’s love shining like a beacon through your words and actions.

  26. Nanette

    That was a well written response with both mercy and sober judgment. Our hearts are with you as you continue to navigate through being public figures and grievous, painful family matters. You’ve walked wisely and carefully, and I respect you both. I pray your new lives in Oklahoma will bring forth a new season of joy with new friendships, new opportunities, and flourishing faith.

  27. CC

    This entire situation is very sad. I admire what you wrote and completely agree. Unfortunately, this hits way to close to home so I’m sure it’s added an extra burden on what you say with your own loved ones being harmed by this devastating form of abuse. Many people comment & will say this type of crime/addiction/….despicable behavior (not sure what word to use) is not treatable, curable etc; but even with your heavy hearts you still have love for him and his family. I’m a believer and feel as though giving yourself completely over to our God there is room for redemption but as you mentioned once you take ownership of your sin/wrongs and willing to put in the hard work to totally change. 10 years plus is a long time in prison but a short time for good people doing right by God. My prayers are with you and your entire family and I hope Josh has the fight to get well and hopefully family can help him implement new/more programs so people have the tools to get well. You’re in my prayers, CC

    • Karen Anderson

      Unfortunately, Josh continues to deny that he did anything wrong. His lawyers are preparing to appeal his conviction. The first step to addressing any addiction like this is to take responsibility for your actions. He isn’t and may never (as his father seems determined to use every avenue available to him to get Josh out of prison as soon as possible). Rehabilitation services are useless if he refuses to own any of his actions. Some people are in fact born sociopaths. Josh appears to be in this category considering the long history of sexual abuse he has. You would think that after hurting and humiliating Anna so publicly (and her forgiving him!!!) that he would straighten up and fly right. But if it’s in his very nature, then he likely can’t control it and should be kept away from all children forever.

  28. julia

    A question for lawyer Derick – What do you see for the chances of Josh or Jim Bob asking the governor to commute Josh’s sentence? That worries me, with Jim Bob’s political cronies. Have you heard any talk about appealing to the governor? I know they want to appeal the case itself, but what about getting the governor to overturn everything that’s been decided so far? Could that happen? I’m sure I’m not the only one wondering.

    • Karen Anderson

      I don’t know the law, but I’m sure that with the Duggar’s wealth, they will use every avenue available to them to get Josh out of prison as soon as possible.

      • Name

        Think of all the wasted money they’ve spent so far to keep him from suffering the consequences of his actions. Lawyer fees, probably hush money, “drop the lawsuit” money, you name it. Now they’ll waste more money on an appeal, and meanwhile, our tax money goes to house, feed, and clothe him. (This is not to diminish anything else about what he did. This is just to point out what a waste of money this has been, on top of everything else horrible about it.)
        But yeah, what about getting pardoned or commuted? Could that happen? And do you think the appeal of the case has any merit?

  29. Michelle

    Thank you for this. As a believer, it was very difficult to read the “character witness” statements. Josh is not a victim here but the perpetrator. That lack of acknowledgment let alone understanding what taking responsibility means. Joshua’s “entertainment” was watching sadistic abuse of infants and children. And to read Michelle” s & Anna”s pleas to return him quickly to his children “who need him”. The sick irony of these statements. It is highly improbable that Joshua hasn’t abused his own children. My prayer was for the judge to do what his wife would not….protect their children (the bare minimum) by him not having access to them until their youngest child in the home was 18 yr. I likewise had the thought that at least in prison he will have sex offender rehab.

  30. Name *Helen

    By the time he gets out his three minor children will be teenagers


  31. Eternid47

    My prayers are with all of you but especially his wife and children. May the God of peace and comfort surround you especially during this times. My heart breaks for all of you but I take comfort that God is still in control. Much love to all of you!

  32. Mary

    Praying for peace and healing for your family.

  33. Jon

    Should have been a life sentence not just 20 yrs

  34. Coleen

    Jill, beautiful response. Trauma is powerful in the body and I’m sure there is a level of deep exhalation right now that the situation has been wrapped up, so to speak. Take good, good care of yourself. Get lots of rest. Just you, Derrick, and the babies for a while. Let yourself be held by your community, even by our energy and prayers. Lots of love to you.

  35. Linda Harrington

    As a victim of childhood abuse, I found your words comforting. Thank you for sharing.

  36. SUz is salty

    Dear Jill and Derick, Your response was a good one. I just wish you’re acknowledge there are real victims, children, who were harmed in the making of Josh’s entertainment. Every single time someone downloads and views this awful content the child is revictimized again and again. I have worked in residential treatment centers with children who’d been used in this type of entertainment. It is soul-destroying, and incredibly difficult to have anything resembling a normal life. Please remember them in your prayers.


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