The Duggar Sisters Win a Big Victory in Court Regarding Josh's Alleged Abuse

Duggar Sisters

It's official. Duggar sisters Jill, Jessa, Jinger, and Joy-Anna will be allowed to move forward with a privacy lawsuit against the city of Springdale, Arkansas, after officials released confidential information about them and their brother Josh's alleged sexual abuse in 2002 and 2003.

  • A federal appeals court ruled Friday that the sisters had an "expectation of privacy" for the police report, which was revealed to In Touch in 2015.

    Jill Dillard, Jessa Seewald, Jinger Vuolo, and Joy-Anna can now move forward with a violation of privacy lawsuit against officials from the city of Springdale and Washington County, for releasing identifying information about the investigation surrounding Josh's reported abuse in 2002 and 2003.

    Although their names were redacted, there was more than enough information present to identify them, and the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals wrote on its ruling, "The content and circumstances of these disclosures do not just meet the standard of 'shockingly degrading or egregiously humiliating,' they illustrate them."

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  • Josh was accused of inappropriately touching his sisters when he was a teenager. He was also accused of touching an underage babysitter.

    Officials released the report from the police investigation under the Freedom of Information Act, and the sisters sued for violation of their privacy. A lower court refused to dismiss the officials from the lawsuit, who appealed on the grounds that they qualified for immunity.

    The appeals court refused to dismiss them, writing that "immunity protects officials who respond incorrectly in confusing situations. It does not, however, 'protect unreasonable mistakes or plain incompetence.'"

  • The revelation that Josh had molested his sisters lead the cancellation of the family's TLC realty show, 19 Kids and Counting.

    Jill and Jessa came forward to out themselves as Josh's victims, and did an interview with Megyn Kelly, where they said that they felt violated twice -- the first time by their brother and his actions, and the second by the the officials who released the private police report to the media. Jessa said in the interview, "I see it as a re-victimization that's even a thousand times worse."

    The show was rebranded as Jill & Jessa: Counting On not too long after, and later shortened to Counting On.

  • We're sure the sisters are eager for some closure on the matter, and this puts them a big step closer to that.

    City officials had no business releasing that information to the media, and while we don't necessarily care about Josh being outed, it is so wrong that his sisters had to live through it again. We hope they get some recompense for what they went through in 2015.