19 Kids and Counting star quits anti-gay group after child molestation allegations
One of the stars of reality show ’19 Kids and Counting’ has quit his role with an anti-gay group, after reports he molested young girls as a teenager.
An unsealed police report this week revealed claims that that Josh Duggar, one of the 19 children of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, abused girls as a teenager.
The Duggars are devout Christians who don’t believe in birth control, and have their own TLC reality series – despite repeatedly speaking out to condemn homosexuality.
According to the report, incidents occurred in 2002 and 2003, when Duggar was 14, when he allegedly fondled the genitals and breasts of girls, some of whom were sleeping.
The police were not made aware of the incidents until 2006.
In a statement this week Josh Duggar – who serves an executive director for a listed anti-gay hate group – appeared to confirm the reports – and that his parents were aware of the situation.
He said in the statement: “Twelve years ago, as a young teenager I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret.
“I hurt others, including my family and close friends. I confessed this to my parents who took several steps to help me address the situation.
“We spoke with the authorities where I confessed my wrongdoing and my parents arranged for me and those affected by my actions to receive counseling.”
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A statement from his parents revealed they had known about the incidents – saying they reacted by trying “to teach him right from wrong”.
Duggar has resigned from his role working for listed anti-gay hate group, the Family Research Council, amid the scandal.
The family has campaigned against LGBT rights for years citing their Christian faith.
While campaigning against an equal rights law this summer, Josh Duggar’s mother Michelle Duggar claimed: “I don’t believe the citizens of Fayetteville would want males with past child predator convictions that claim they are female to have a legal right to enter private areas that are reserved for women and girls.”
The Family Research Council is listed as an anti-LGBT hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Centre – and has repeatedly compared gay rights to the Holocaust.