Who among us hasn’t been horrified by the reports of how financier Jeffrey Epstein has long been grooming and sexually abusing under-age females—and evading appropriate justice? But did you know that for two years now, an investigative journalist for the Miami Herald did more than feel outraged.
Julie K. Brown, 57, has been chasing the truth: She found and interviewed women who said that in the past, they were part of Epstein’s depraved sex trafficking. Many of these women were dealing with a swirl of intense emotions; she supported them and helped them be heard. She gathered reams of information and insight—so much so that it filled a spare room in her house. “This is a search for the truth,” Julie has said. “This is about sexual abuse and power and people who cover it up.
Brown was awarded numerous journalism awards for her work, most notably a George Polk Award for Justice Reporting, but now—as Epstein faces serious charges—her work has come to wider attention. People are recognizing her dogged pursuit of truth as being key evidence in the case currently working to stop this predator.
Even when others told Julie that the Epstein crimes were the equivalent of a “cold case,” she pressed on, studying how such grave crimes yielded such a lenient sentence for Epstein. Julie was the reporter who found that, back in 2007, Alexander Acosta—our current Labor Secretary—led the decision to give Epstein immunity from federal sex trafficking charges.
Now, the spotlight is on this very issue, with calls for Acosta to resign as well as renewed prosecution of Epstein’s crimes against women. “Sometimes a story deserves a new look,” Julie has said. “There were all of these puzzle pieces that were out there, and when you put all of these puzzle pieces together, with the passage of time, there was this really damning story.”
For the role Julie has played in bringing Epstein’s crimes to light and sharing his victims’ stories, we applaud her.