Attorney honored for work helping Butler County’s most vulnerable

A Butler County assistant prosecutor who takes on some of the most gut-wrenching cases involving children and sexual assault victims is the 2017 recipient of the Meritorious Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Award.

Kelly Heile, chief of the office’s child/sexual assault division, received the award presented by the Ohio Prosecuting Attorney’s Association last week in Columbus.

Heile has worked for the Butler County Prosecutor’s Office for 10 years, beginning as a juvenile division prosecutor. She previously worked as a prosecutor in Delaware County after graduating from Capital University Law School.

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In his nomination of Heile, Butler County Prosecutor Michael Gmoser said, “Where Kelly truly shines, fighting with conviction for each child and seemingly against all odds — and she wins a lot. Kelly’s work in child physical assault and murder cases is also notable. Kelly has successfully prosecuted a number of murder, involuntary manslaughter, and child endangering cases within Butler County, including State of Ohio v. Rebekah Kinner and State of Ohio v. Brad Young, a mother and her boyfriend for the death of 2-year old Kinsley Kinner. I had the pleasure of working this case with her and seeing, firsthand, her remarkable ability to relate to the medical professionals, understand the complicated medical testimony, and then present that testimony in a way that a jury can understand.”

Heile has also prosecuted a number of cases resulting in the convictions and long prison sentences for sex offenders.

“Kelly has outstandingly handled the prosecution of fathers, mothers, brothers, uncles, stepparents, teachers, coaches, and more for their sexual abuse of children. Her significant cases include State of Ohio v. Antonio West, who molested his girlfriend’s three daughters, currently serving 30 years to life; State of Ohio v. Luke Buchanan, who molested neighborhood boys in the clubhouse he made for his sons and their friends, currently serving 45 mandatory years” Gmoser wrote in his letter of nomination.

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Most recently, Heile also prosecuted former Fairfield teacher Tyler Conrad for a sex crime with a student and former Miami University Police Officer Dustin Young for a sex crime and abduction of an adult co-worker

“She makes the office look good,” Gmoser told the Journal-News.

Heile, of Hamilton, is married to husband, John, and they have two young sons.

“I am honored. I know I do a job a lot of people don’t want, but I don’t think I do anything special. We have a great staff of prosecutors here who do a wonderful job,” Heile said.

She admitted the cases where children have been severely injured or are dead are emotionally draining at first.

“Then I get angry,” Heile said. “I can punish someone for what they did, but I can’t help the victim.”

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