Ex-Iowa star Pierce pleads guilty to assault

8/22/2005 - Iowa Hawkeyes

ADEL, Iowa -- Former Iowa basketball star Pierre Pierce
decided to plead guilty Monday while jury selection resumed at his
trial in which he had been charged with assaulting an ex-girlfriend
in January.

The 22-year-old player pleaded guilty to assault with intent to
commit sexual abuse, third-degree burglary, criminal mischief and
false imprisonment.

Prosecutors agreed to dismiss their initial charge of
first-degree burglary, which would have carried a 25-year sentence.

They recommended a suspended five-year sentence for third-degree
burglary. Assistant Attorney General Patricia Houlihan said
punishment on the other three charges will be argued at a
sentencing hearing. Prosecutors said they will seek prison time.

The sex crime may require Pierce to register on the state's
sexual offender registry for 10 years.

Iowa coach Steve Alford dismissed Pierce from the team on Feb.
2, days after police confirmed he was the focus of a criminal
investigation. He was the Hawkeyes' leading scorer at the time.