The charges against former University of Iowa basketball player Pierre Pierce were upgraded today. Pierce is now charged with two counts of first-degree burglary, one count of assault with intent to committ sexual abuse — all felonies — and one count of fourth-degree criminal michief. The 21-year-old Pierce was originally charged with five misdemeanor assault and false imprisonment charges and one felony burglary charge linked to a January 27th argument he had with his girlfriend at her West Des Moines appartment. The Iowa Attorney General says the charges were upgraded as more information became available. The A-G’s office also says its Violence Against Women unit is assisting the Dallas County Attorney in the prosecution of the case. Pierce had been the leading scorer on the Hawkeye basketball team, but was dismissed February 2nd after police revealed they were investigating the incident. Pierce is scheduled to be arraigned on the charges March 4th. If convicted and sentenced to the maximum penatly for all counts — Pierce could face 56 years in prison and nine-thousand dollars in fines.
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