FOND DU LAC | Shannon Cardinal, the former Mayville High School Spanish teacher who had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old male student, was sentenced Wednesday to two years in prison and one year of extended supervision.
The 44-year-old Oakfield woman was charged in 2012 with six counts of sexual assault of a student by school staff and six counts of child enticement-sexual contact. In a plea deal, Cardinal pleaded guilty to one count of sexual assault of a student by school staff.
According to the criminal complaint filed in April 2012, the sexual relationship began on Dec. 8, 2011, and ended April 1, 2012. During that time, Cardinal had numerous sexual encounters with the teen at her home in Oakfield as well as once in Marion, Iowa, where the teen moved in March 2012.
In an interview with the Fond du Lac County Sherriff’s Department, the boy explained that the relationship began when he would visit with Cardinal in her classroom at Mayville High School after he was done eating lunch and that on some days he would not eat lunch and instead spend the whole time in Cardinal’s classroom with her. The boy believed that this activity took place during May or June 2011.
During the fall 2011 semester, the boy enrolled in one of Cardinal’s Spanish classes and also took one of her Spanish classes in the spring 2012 semester until he transferred.
The boy explained that during the fall semester the two began texting each other about class work and random events and that from there the text messages escalated into deeper conversations.
The criminal complaint stated that often the boy would arrange for Cardinal to pick him up in Waupun, where he was visiting his mother who came up from Iowa to see him. The boy would tell his mother that he was staying at a friend’s house in Waupun and would then travel with Cardinal to her house in Oakfield to have sex.
In March 2012, the 17-year-old moved to Iowa and one weekend Cardinal came down and the two had sex at his mother and step-father’s house in Marion while the parents were out of town. The boy’s older sister became aware of the affair.
Cardinal resigned from her position at Mayville High School and has since been replaced.
In addition to the prison sentenced, Cardinal also has to register as a sex offender, provide a DNA sample, cannot have contact with the victim or the victim’s family and is not allowed to have unsupervised contact with male minors who are unrelated.