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Missing in Brooks County

Lisa Molomot, Jeff Bemiss
Lisa Molomot, Jeff Bemiss, Jacob Bricca

Far from the politicians in Washington, D.C. wrangling over immigration policy, there is a place where people are dying. Welcome to Brooks County, Texas, population 4,981. For migrants determined to travel from Latin America to the United States—many fleeing violence and starvation—the most popular route leads through this poor town located 70 miles north of the border. The route is also the deadliest: it is blocked by an interior immigration checkpoint, a military style barricade that diverts migrants into the harsh desert terrain surrounding it. As a result, between 300 and 600 migrants succumb to dehydration and exposure in Brooks County every year. Only one in five is ever found. MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY is a portrait of this struggling American town, caught in the middle of a shameful death-as-deterrence border policy that continues to intensify under President Trump.

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