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Top Stories This Week in the Chronicle.
June 9, 2006

Pierce pleads guilty to Berliner Park stabbing

Columbus--Byrol Scott Pierce, who became a fugitive two years ago while awaiting trial for an attack on a gay man, pleaded guilty to attempted murder on June 6.

Pierce was on a work-release program awaiting trial when he disappeared in July 2004, and he was last seen in Columbus two months later.

Last September, the Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization issued a community alert about him, and information from members of the LGBT community led to his March arrest in Las Vegas.

�I�m thrilled,� said BRAVO executive director Gloria McCauley. �It was an impressive series of events.�

�Things were slow in the investigation for a couple of years, then eventually it all happened very fast,� she noted.

She pointed to the efforts of Franklin County assistant prosecutor Scott Kirschman, who she said was �persistent, dedicated, and wouldn�t give up.�

�The culmination in the arrest in Las Vegas was largely due to his efforts,� McCauley said.

Pierce�s sentencing is scheduled for July 27, and he is expected to get ten years in prison with five years of supervision afterwards.

The sentencing was delayed until the end of July for a pre-sentencing investigation to be carried out. The results of such investigations go into a prisoner�s file and are considered if the convict applies for early release.

Pierce pleaded guilty to a September 23, 2003 attack on a gay Columbus man who he met online. On their second meeting in person, they went to dinner in German Village, then went to nearby Berliner Park.

Pierce parked the car, and the man began to fellate him. While the sex act was taking place, Pierce stabbed him in the back with a long, wooden-handled kitchen knife, which he then used to slash his victim across the chest.

The blade broke off while the two struggled over the knife in the car, and the victim fled the car holding the blade.

He ran towards the park�s softball diamonds and Pierce chased him, tackling him twice. The second time he put his fingers into the wound, opening it more.

The victim broke free of Pierce and ran onto the diamonds, where some of the players were off-duty police officers.

Pierce fled to London, England, where he stole a bank card and a passport from a gay man there. He was arrested after he reentered the United States in February 2004, trying to use the Londoner�s identity.

The victim has recovered from his wounds.

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