Ashmun teacher Janet Brown faces criminal sexual conduct charges for relationship with student

HERSEY – Michigan State Police Troopers arrested a 32-year-old Evart woman Monday on three counts of third degree criminal sexual conduct stemming from a sexual relationship she had with a 16-year-old boy who is a student at the Ashmun School at Eagle Village in Hersey, an adjudicated youth facility for troubled teens.

Janet Brown was a teacher for the Mecosta-Osceola Intermediate School District, which oversees the school at Eagle Village, since November 2011. She previously taught at Cadillac Public Schools.

On Monday, the 77th District Court in Osceola County issued a felony warrant charging her with three counts of third degree criminal sexual conduct. Brown was arrested without incident, and she was lodged at the Osceola County Jail pending her arraignment today.

Brown was put on administrative leave last Wednesday for improper communication with a student outside of school.

School employees became aware of the communication last week, when the school was on a three-week fall break and notified officers from the Michigan State Police Mount Pleasant Post on Tuesday. Residents at Eagle Village are not allowed to have cell phones, so facility employees confiscated the boy’s phone and found messages to Brown. Within 24 hours, they had turned the investigation over to police.

“Our staff did a nice job gathering all the information until they suspected an inappropriate relationship and then they turned it over to police,” said Curt Finch, MOISD superintendent.

He plans to recommend Brown’s termination to the MOISD Board of Education at a regular meeting set for 6 p.m. on Dec. 10 in the MOISD Administrative Building.

“Student trust and safety is No. 1 priority for the MOISD,” Finch said in a statement. “The investigation has initially determined this to be an isolated incident.”