A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit Josh Duggar’s four sisters filed against officials who released records that concluded the former reality television star fondled them.
U.S. District Judge Timothy L. Brooks dismissed the lawsuit Wednesday against Springdale and Washington County officials over the records’ release. The sisters had sued claiming invasion of privacy and outrage.
Duggar and his sisters are part of a large Arkansas family that starred on TLC’s “19 Kids and Counting” until the network canceled the show in 2015 following revelations that Duggar as a juvenile molested four of his sisters and a babysitter.
Authorities began investigating the abuse in 2006 after getting a tip but concluded that the statute of limitations had expired.
Jill Dillard, Jessa Seewald, Jinger Vuolo and Joy Duggar filed the lawsuit in 2017, claiming officials improperly released redacted police investigation documents to a magazine. Their attorneys say the documents made it easy to identify them.
In his ruling, Brooks ruled there was no evidence the officials intended to inflict emotional distress.
Duggar was convicted in December of one count each of receiving and possessing child pornography and is awaiting sentencing. His attorneys last month asked a judge to toss out his conviction or order a new trial.
Multiple members of the Duggar family attended the trial, including Josh’s father Jim Bob Duggar. He was seen interacting with other family members during breaks of the trial, according to reports.
Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar released a statement regarding their son’s conviction on their website.
“This entire ordeal has been very grievous,” they said. “Today, God’s grace, through the love and prayers of so many, have sustained us. Our hearts and prayers are with anyone who has ever been harmed through CSAM [Child Sexual Abuse Material].”
“In the days ahead, we will do all we can to surround our daughter-in-law [Josh’s wife] Anna and their children with love and support,” the duo continued. “As parents, we will never stop praying for Joshua, and loving him, as we do all of our children. In each of life’s circumstances, we place our trust in God. He is our source of strength and refuge. Thank you for your prayers.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.