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Former APS teacher arraigned on sexual assault charges

Submitted by on January 14, 2019 – 12:39 pmNo Comment

A former teacher for Alpena Public Schools has been charged with sexually assaulting a young student.

Heather Ellen Winfield, 38, was arraigned Monday morning and is facing five counts of criminal sexual conduct in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd degree, along with using a computer to commit a crime and accosting a child for immoral purposes.

The alleged crimes were committed between 2016 and 2018. True North Radio Network has learned Winfield allegedly sexually assaulted a former student of hers when she taught at Thunder Bay Junior High School. The boy was 11 years-old at the time.

True North Radio has also learned the school district became aware of some inappropriate communication between Winfield and the child and turned that information over to police, which initiated the investigation. Winfield subsequently resigned shortly thereafter, in the fall of 2016.

It is alleged that Winfield continued to have contact with the victim after she resigned and after she became aware of the police investigation.

During Monday’s video arraignment, the court accepted real property in lieu of a $250,000 cash bond.  As a condition of the bond, Winfield can have no contact with any children but her own.  That includes relatives or children who might be at her place of employment.  She also is prohibited from being in possession of a firearm or any other dangerous weapon.

Winfield’s husband and other family members attended the arraignment.  A preliminary examination is expected to be held within 21 days although that timeframe is subject to change.  Winfield was arrested Friday.  She faces a maximum of life in prison if convicted as charged.

Winfield has no prior criminal record.


Alpena Public Schools is committed to the safety, security, and quality of the learning environment for all of our students.

We will always take proper action in alignment with our board policies and Michigan law to maintain a safe environment for students.

Heather Winfield was employed with Alpena Public Schools from October 15, 2012, until her official resignation on November 11, 2016. Alpena Public Schools has cooperated with this investigation from the beginning and will continue to cooperate moving forward.

Due to state and federal law protecting student privacy and personnel records, we are unable to share any additional details at this time.  Alpena Public Schools is a proud participant with OK2SAY (www.michigan.gov/ok2say).

Students and families are encouraged to report any issues that they feel places students or staff members at risk.

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