A CLOSER LOOK: Josh Duggar’s child porn arrest brings interest to the photographed victims

A Closer Look

There's a push by several nonprofits to change the terminology about this crime.

Getty Images.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — “What is this about, has somebody downloaded pornography?” That’s what Josh Duggar asked when feds searched his car lot in May 2019, according to Homeland Security Investigator (HSI) Special Agent Gerald Faulkner.

HSI: 265 images of naked minors were found in the hard drive

During the four-hour detention hearing at Fayetteville’s federal courthouse on Wednesday, May 5, 2021, Faulkner testified that he, and another investigator(s), told Duggar they had a federal search warrant for digital contraband. “No one disclosed that a child porn [search] was happening,” said Faulkner.

The HSI agent described for the court four days of internet activity at a business owned by Duggar in Springdale — from May 13 through May 16, 2019.

Agents seized three items during the search at the car lot: a desktop computer in the office, a MacBook laptop, and Duggar’s iPhone.

May 13: A Linux partition was created on the desktop computer. This divides the computer’s hard drive into two independent sections. One side of the computer had a program called Covenant Eyes. Both Josh and his wife subscribed to this program where people can get help to overcome porn addiction. The other side of the computer had a dark web browser, according to Faulkner.

May 14: At 4:49 p.m., an iPhone text was sent from the wholesale car lot that stated, “got stuck here and still not free yet.” From 4:50 p.m. until 5:46 p.m. the desktop computer was used to access “porn sites associated with rape and files associated with child porn,” Faulkner said.

May 15: At 11:15 a.m. an iPhone message was sent and stated, “I’m at my car lot now.” Twenty minutes later, the desktop computer user downloaded files associated with child pornography. At 5:08 p.m., an iPhone message was sent, “I’m here at the car lot will be here til around 6 or so.” From 5:20 until 5:40 p.m. about three dark web files were downloaded — this included 65 images of child porn. The user sent an iPhone message at 5:48 p.m., “still have customers here. … no problem probably be here a while.”

May 16: Before noon, more dark web files were accessed and a picture was taken of the Wholesale Motorcars office desk.

Also, a zip folder had been opened depicting child pornography. “Two hundred images were flagged as naked minors were found in an unallocated space,” said Faulkner. “[This means] it’s a place where a file will be deleted, but it still stays in the hard drive.”

At the hearing, Duggar’s attorney Justin Gelfand said Faulkner’s testimony was based on information from others, [for example] he did not prepare the forensic examination summary. Faulkner said, “No sir.”

Duggar has pleaded not guilty to the child pornography charges. He was released on bond Thursday afternoon, May 6, from the Washington County Detention Center with a GPS monitor strapped to his ankle.

He is staying with a third-party custodian and the court has set a list of conditions he must adhere to until his July trial date.

This is the rape and torture of children, not child porn, said  National Child Protection Taskforce (NCPTF) founder Kevin Metcalf.

Getty Images.

There is a push from several agencies to stop using the term “child pornography.” The Child Rescue Coalition Chief Operating Officer Glen Pounder said, “when children are involved, it’s not child pornography. It’s sexual abuse, and it’s a crime.”

The nonprofit believes language is important when it comes to children. Their mission is to change a legal definition used in charging perpetrators.

Close up of a computer keyboard with a Bitcoin symbol on. Getty Images.

“Terms such as child pornography, child porn, kiddie porn, make it easier to live with,” said Metcalf. “This is the torture of people, of children.” Taking it a step further Metcalf said if a person is arrested for committing this crime, there is no resource for the victim. “Society does not ask where are these kids who are traded on the dark web.”

A better description would be Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM), according to Metcalf.

Here is a list of a dozen organizations that are pushing for eliminating the term “child pornography.”

  • Homeland Security Investigations (HSI)
  • National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC)
  • International Justice Mission (IJM)
  • EPCAT International
  • Rape Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN)
  • International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMEC)
  • Global Survivor Network (GSN)
  • National Child Protection Task Force (NCPTF)
  • Phoenix 11
  • Canadian Centre for Child Protection
  • WePROTECT Global Alliance

The most shared child abuse file is being seen on more than 2.6M IP addresses, per Child Rescue Coalition.

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