D Dipasupil/Getty Josh Duggar in 2014
Josh Duggar received good news early on his sentencing day — one of his December convictions for child pornography will be dropped.
On Wednesday, with the agreement of both the defense and prosecution, the court vacated the conviction on count 2 without prejudice. U.S. District Judge Timothy L. Brooks, who was presiding, noted that possession is a lesser included offense of the receipt of child pornography.
Judge Brooks further ruled that Duggar, 34, did not knowingly distribute pornography and sustained the defense's objection to that potential enhancement to Duggar's sentence.
When he wasn't taking notes, Josh — who wore a grey suit with a black mask — often turned to smile at Anna, 33, during the proceedings.
Josh's sister Joy-Anna (Duggar) Forsyth and brother Jason Duggar were also there to support their older brother at the Western District of Arkansas Federal Courthouse in Fayetteville.
As a result of Wednesday's vacation, Josh now faces up to 20 years of imprisonment and up to $250,000 in fines total (he previously faced that potential maximum sentence for each conviction).
Kris Connor/Getty Josh Duggar
Josh's legal team asserted that he still maintains his innocence and plans to appeal. They further presented more than 20 objections to the sentencing report.
During one objection, attention was drawn to the testimony of Bobye Holt, who claimed Josh confessed "he engaged in a pattern of behavior involving the sexual abuse of young girls" when he was a teenager. Holt also attended Wednesday's sentencing hearing and appeared to become upset during this stage of the proceedings.
Ahead of his sentencing, Judge Brooks affirmed that he will allow considerations regarding Josh's alleged behaviors with Jane Does as a teen to be viewed as an enhancement.
Homeland Security arrested Josh on April 29, 2021. He was then held without bond in an Arkansas jail before being released one week later to designated third-party custodians, Lacount and Maria Reber.
After his convictions in December, his legal team unsuccessfully asked for an acquittal in January. The sentencing trial was originally set for April 5 but Judge Brooks granted Duggar's request to delay the hearing.