Just before noon on Wednesday, Pierson was convicted of eight of 12 charges, including two counts of sexual assault on a person in custody, by a nine-women, three-man jury that deliberated for more than seven hours over two days. He was acquitted of the most serious charge, aggravated sodomy, in which a woman claimed he forced her to perform oral sex during a 2016 traffic stop.
Shortly after Judge Bobby Peters read the verdict in a quiet third-floor courtroom, Pierson broke down, sobbing as he spoke to his attorney, then hugged family members. The two deputies who took him into custody gave Pierson a couple of minutes to say his goodbyes.
Pierson’s charges stemmed from three traffic stops in the fall of 2015 and February 2016, in which three different women accused the deputy of misconduct, ranging from stalking to forcing one woman to perform oral sex.
All eight of the convictions — the two counts of sexual assault on a person in custody, four counts of violation of public oath, false imprisonment and tampering with evidence — pertained to Pierson’s duties as a law enforcement officer.