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U.S. v. Stephen Shipps: Docket 20-CR-20517

In an effort to assist those individuals who have been affected by this case, this webpage has been developed to provide court and case related information.  This does not replace written notification to those identified as victims of the charged offenses, it simply provides an additional resource from which to obtain information. 

PLEASE NOTE:  Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the courthouse is closed until further notice.  As a result, all scheduled court proceedings will  be accessible for viewing over the internet via Zoom.  Public access links for viewing may be obtained from the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, webpage at the following link:   Utilizing the date search feature on the United States District Court’s web page, insert the date of the hearing into the box identified as “Jump to Date” and press “Go.”    A list of hearings scheduled for that particular date will be displayed.   Scroll to the appropriate case and click the box identifed “Access Attendance Information”.   Proceed as directed by the U.S. District Court to view the hearing.   It is recommended that viewers log in 5 minutes prior to the scheduled start time.     

For questions, information, or assistance, you may contact Sandy Palazzolo, Victim Witness Coordinator at 313-226-9633 or Sherri Holloway, Victim Witness Specialist at 313-226-9753.

10/29/2020 – On October 28,2020  a federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Washtenaw County resident Stephen Shipps with 2 counts of Transportation Of A Minor To Engage In Sexual Activity.  Defendant Shipps appeared in United States District Court on October 29, 2020 before the Honorable Magistrate Judge Steven Whalen.   Defendant Shipps was released on a $10,000.00 unsecured bond with conditions. 

The Completion of the Arraignment is currently scheduled for Monday, November 2, 2020 at 1:00 p.m.   This hearing will take place over the internet via Zoom. 

From 1989 to 2019, Shipps was employed by the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre, and Dance as a violin professor. Shipps was also the director of the Strings Preparatory Program, which offered instruction to young musicians ranging from elementary school through high school-age. Shipps retired from the University of Michigan in February 2019.  In addition, Shipps served on the faculties of Indiana University, the North Carolina School of the Arts, the University of Nebraska – Omaha, and the Banff Centre in Canada.  He also taught students at summer music programs in the Czech Republic, Germany, and the United Kingdom.

Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) is leading the ongoing investigation of Stephen Shipps.  HSI requests and encourages anyone that has relevant information about or may be a victim of Mr. Shipps’s alleged crimes to call the HSI Tipline at (866) DHS-2-ICE, that’s (866) 347-2423, or email investigators and victim assistance personnel at

Please note that an indictment is only an accusation. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

No further court hearing dates have been scheduled at this time.  Updates, to include scheduled court hearings, will be posted to this website as soon as they become available.

To view a copy of the Indictment, please click here

 To access a copy of the Press Release, please here

Updated October 29, 2020

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