“Selling Girls,” Original Investigation into U.S. Child Sex Trafficking, Premieres October 19 on TEGNA Station Digital Platforms

McLEAN, VA – TEGNA Inc. (NYSE: TGNA) announced today the premiere of “Selling Girls,” a six-part digital, episodic series investigating sex trafficking of children in America. Produced by award-winning investigative news teams from WXIA in Atlanta and KHOU in Houston, the entire series of “Selling Girls” rolls out first on TEGNA stations’ digital platforms beginning today, October 19. Each station will localize the story, showing the direct impact in their local community. On-air coverage will begin on October 22.

While the series focuses on the sex trafficking of underage girls, boys are also victims of the minor sex trade and all children under the age of 18 who are induced to engage in commercial sex are victims of trafficking.

“‘Selling Girls’ tells a disturbing story that no one wants to talk about, but we must expose and address the issue of trafficking of our young people in the United States. No topic is more timely as the FBI announced just this week that it has rescued children and arrested traffickers as part of a multi-state human trafficking ring,” said Ellen Crooke, vice president, news, TEGNA. “But there’s more work to do. Local journalism has the power to shine a light on national issues through a focused lens. We hope that ‘Selling Girls’ educates and informs our audiences and helps reverse the course of human trafficking in this country.”

“We applaud TEGNA for its thoughtful investigation that demonstrates the realities of child sex trafficking in the U.S.,” said Staca Shehan, who leads the child sex trafficking team at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. “Traffickers are making an alarming profit while American victims endure countless days and nights of rape, abuse, torture and violence. Awareness and education are key to ending the demand and putting a stop to child sex trafficking.”

The six episodes of “Selling Girls” include:

Each station’s coverage is unique, highlighting the crisis in their community. With complicated and often conflicting local, state and federal sex trafficking laws, TEGNA stations reveal the flaws in the system and what can be done to help protect kids.

“Selling Girls” is the latest series from the award-winning producers of the investigative units at WXIA and KHOU. Previously, the “Charlie Foxtrot” series (produced in 2016-17) drove policy changes for how the U.S. Military provides treatment and care for veterans suffering from PTSD. They also took a raw look at the dramatic rise in heroin-related deaths in American suburbs in “The Triangle”(2016), a series that helped to elevate the national opioid conversation and is now used as a regular part of addiction awareness and education.

TEGNA Inc. (NYSE: TGNA) is an innovative media company that serves the greater good of our communities. With 46 television stations in 38 markets, TEGNA delivers relevant content and information to consumers across platforms. It is the largest owner of top 4 affiliates in the top 25 markets, reaching approximately one-third of all television households nationwide. Each month, TEGNA reaches 50 million adults on-air and 32 million across its digital platforms. TEGNA has been consistently honored with the industry’s top awards, including Edward R. Murrow, George Polk, Alfred I. DuPont and Emmy Awards. TEGNA delivers results for advertisers through unparalleled and innovative solutions including OTT local advertising network Premion, centralized marketing resource Hatch, and G/O Digital, a one-stop shop for local businesses to connect with consumers through digital marketing. Across platforms, TEGNA tells empowering stories, conducts impactful investigations and delivers innovative marketing solutions. For more information, visit

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