On April 29, 2021, Josh Duggar was arrested in Fayetteville, Ark., for charges related to child pornography. The oldest son of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, Josh Duggar previously confessed to sexually assaulting four of his underage sisters (one of them was reportedly 5 years old) back when he was a teenager. He was at the forefront of the Ashley Madison scandal as well. Are the latest rumors anything to go by? Did Duggar pass away — or is the theory a mere byproduct of widespread disdain?
According to a new rumor, Josh Duggar passed away.
Duggar was released from the Washington County Jail in Fayetteville, Ark., on May 6, 2021. His request to postpone the trial (which was set to begin on July 6, 2021) was approved by U.S. District Judge Timothy L. Brooks. But so, should we trust the latest rumor about his death, or is it just a hoax?
Several gossip websites published obituaries after the news about Duggar's arrest came out — but Duggar is still very much alive.
"I know you shouldn’t wish death on people, but I hope Josh Duggar dies a slow, painful, torturous death," wrote @CapxMercury.
"I have been the biggest hypocrite ever," Duggar said in 2015.
In August 2015, Gawker revealed that Duggar spent around $986 on Ashley Madison.
"I have been the biggest hypocrite ever," Duggar wrote in a statement shared on Aug. 20, 2015. "While espousing faith and family values, I have secretly, over the last several years, been viewing pornography on the internet, and this became a secret addiction, and I became unfaithful to my wife."
Duggar resigned from his role as the executive director of FRC in May 2015.
Duggar left his role as the executive director of the Family Research Council in May 2015, after his history of sexual misconduct garnered more attention. According to Daily Mail, he spent six months at a Christian rehab center, the Reformers Unanimous, in Rockford, Ill., after the scandal broke out.
The public backlash was triggered by a series of incidents taking place in the early 2000s. As a teenager, Duggar sexually assaulted several underage girls, including four of his sisters. He would sneak into their bedroom and engage in inappropriate touching. It's understood that locks were installed on their doors as a preventive measure.
"When Josh was a young teenager, he made some very bad mistakes, and we were shocked. We had tried to teach him right from wrong. That dark and difficult time caused us to seek God like never before," the Duggar family wrote in a statement published in May 2015. "We pray that as people watch our lives, they see that we are not a perfect family."
"Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret," Josh wrote in May 2015. "I understood that if I continued down this wrong road that I would end up ruining my life. [...] I would do anything to go back to those teen years and take different actions."
Duggar's trial is set to begin on Nov. 30, 2021.
If you need support, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 or visit RAINN.org to chat online one-on-one with a support specialist at any time.