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Cyntoia Brown Long was a 16-year-old victim of sex trafficking who was arrested and convicted in Tennessee in 2004 of killing a man who had solicited her for sex.

Cyntoia Brown Long
Cyntoia Brown Long

For years, Brown Long and her supporters maintained that she had acted in self-defense. The legal battle resulted in prominent attorneys taking her case, a documentary by PBS, and backing from such celebrities as Kim Kardashian West and Rhianna.

In 2019 then Governor Bill Haslam commuted Brown Long’s sentence. Last year the Tennessee House passed legislation inspired by her case that aims to protect sex trafficking victims who are minors.

Brown Long is now a speaker, activist, and author who co-wrote a memoir called Free Cyntoia: My Search for Redemption in the American Prison System.

Brown Long and Charles W. Bone, founder of Bone McAllester Norton PLLC, will give the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, College of Law’s annual Rose Lecture on Tuesday, February 23, at 12:00 p.m. This year the lecture is part of the Rethinking Reentry Symposium hosted by the Tennessee Journal of Race, Gender, and Social Justice.


Rachel McClelland (865-974-6788,