Berlin High math teacher accused of sexual assault has case continued

Published on Tuesday, 9 October 2018 20:16
Written by Charles Paullin


BERLIN - Michael Cwirka, the suspended Berlin High School math teacher charged with having a sexual relationship with a then 17-year-old high school senior during the 2016-17 school year, had his case continued to Oct. 18 in Meriden Superior Court on Tuesday.

Cwirka, 29, of Meriden, was charged Sept. 10 with three counts of second-degree sexual assault and five counts of fourth-degree sexual assault. He was supposed to enter a plea on Oct. 9, before receiving the new court date.

Cwirka’s attorney, Austin Ryan McGuigan, of Hartford, said the continuance was because he is very ill at the moment.

Cwirka remains suspended from the school district with pay when he was charged, Superintendent of Schools Brian Benigni said Tuesday. He was first placed on administrative leave in February when the investigation into his charges surfaced.

The school district has been conducting its own internal investigation into the matter, Benigni added, since February. The district will be making a decision on the future of Cwirka’s suspension at the end of it, which Benigni said he is not sure when will happen. It could or could not coincide with Cwirka’s court proceedings, he said.

Cwirka was already replaced as the swimming coach, which was the role he was in when the alleged relationship with the student began. Cwirka was also a class and club advisor at the school.

Cwirka’s attorney told the Associated Press that his client categorically denies the allegations.

Charles Paullin can be reached at 860-801-5074 or

Posted in New Britain Herald, Berlin, General News on Tuesday, 9 October 2018 20:16. Updated: Tuesday, 9 October 2018 20:19.