The abuse would last some time for one daughter, and as that daughter got older, Brown would shift his focus to younger daughters, Deputy Utah County Attorney David Sturgill said last week after speaking with the Brown family.
Yet the egregious crimes may never have fallen into the public eye. Reporters following up on a car accident involving Keith Brown stumbled across charges filed against him just days before. On the way home from a Valentine's Day dinner with his wife, Brown drove his Porsche off the road and plunged 300 feet into a creek in Little Cottonwood Canyon. Police said he had been traveling too fast for the area.
"The position of a case of this magnitude was to have it resolved as quickly and quietly as possible," said Steven Shapiro, defense attorney for Keith Brown. "The intention was to not have this be any sort of a media event."
Sturgill said Brown's prosecution was treated "like any other." He pointed out it's hard enough for a victim of sexual assault to come forward, let alone have others know about it. "If I had my way, it wouldn't be reported on [by the news]," Sturgill said.
But Alana Kindness, executive director of the Utah Coalition Against Sexual Assault, said media reports of abuse are advantageous to other victims. She believes the women of The 5 Browns coming forward have made a difference for other victims of a similar crime.
"I was very grateful to those young adults for coming forward," she said. "People say, 'Oh, I see this can happen to anyone.' It doesn't matter what neighborhood they come from or what family they come from. … It helps break down those misconceptions about who perpetrators are and who the victims are."
Being properly informed on the behavior of a suspect and the behavior of a victim "is critical in helping [other] victims to understand and not feel shame," Kindness said.