ASHLAND, Maine — A former high school teacher who held jobs in both Greenville and Ashland recently pleaded guilty to two charges of gross sexual assault lodged against him after an investigation that began last year.
Stephen Wierzbowski, 27, appeared for sentencing before Aroostook County Superior Court Justice E. Allen Hunter.
Deputy District Attorney Carrie Linthicum said on Friday that the former English teacher at Greenville High School and Ashland High School was sentenced to four years in prison with all but 18 months suspended, along with two years of probation. He also will have to register as a sex offender for the next 10 years.
Wierzbowski was charged in late November 2011 after an investigation that police said spanned from Greenville to Ashland. Wierzbowski was employed by SAD 32 in Ashland at the time, having served as an English teacher at Greenville High School until July 2010.
Gehrig Johnson, who is superintendent of both SAD 32 and SAD 1 in Presque Isle, said last year that the charges against Wierzbowski resulted from a report received by the school administration on Nov. 29. The complaint led to an investigation by State Police and Wierzbowski was arrested on Nov. 30. He was immediately placed on leave from the district and ordered to have no contact with students.
One month later, he was arrested again for violating his bail by using alcohol and being in possession of a weapon and marijuana.
He later pleaded guilty to the bail violation and was sentenced to 48 hours in jail and a $250 fine.
Linthicum said that the gross sexual assault investigation ultimately identified two victims, one from Piscataquis County and one from Aroostook.
She said that the 17-year-old Piscataquis County victim appeared in court and read a statement.
“She basically talked about how his crimes affected her,” she said on Friday. “She was a lonely girl and he was nice to her. He held a position of trust and he abused the trust.”
Linthicum said that Wierzbowski’s probation comes with “numerous” conditions, including drug and alcohol restrictions and no contact with the victims.