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Ex-sheriff’s officer faces charges of sexual assault

MENOMINEE — A former Menominee County Sheriff’s Office sergeant has been charged with two counts of criminal sexual conduct for the alleged sexual assault of a Menominee High School student.

On Monday, Menominee County Prosecuting Attorney Jeffrey T. Rogg charged Brian William Helfert, 56, of 1116 17th Ave., Menominee, with the alleged sexual assault of a teenage boy enrolled at Menominee High School. Helfert knew the victim through his assignment as a Menominee County Juvenile Crime Investigator and School Resource Officer.

Helfert has been charged with two counts of criminal sexual conduct – third degree (multiple variables), a 15-year felony and a tier III offense under the Sex Offender Registration Act.

According to the criminal complaint, the alleged sexual assault took place in November.

The Menominee Police Department had been investigating Helfert with the help of the Michigan State Police after receiving information from the Michigan Child Protective Services regarding the allegations in November.

Helfert was fired from the Menominee County Sheriff’s Department in December following an investigation for violations to the sheriff’s office policies, procedures and rules of conduct.

Prosecutor Rogg will be personally handling the case and is not seeking a special prosecutor.

“A request for the appointment of a special prosecutor must rely on more than a mere claim that someone might question whether a prosecutor should be disqualified. I am confident that I possess the impartiality, ability, expertise and other resources necessary to prosecute the case through its conclusion, including any interlocutory or post-conviction appeals,” Rogg said in a press release.

Helfert is scheduled to be arraigned in Menominee County District Court on Jan. 22. A cash bond was set at $5,000, which Helfert immediately posted.

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