(The Collegian file photo)

Jail time for former Fresno State mascot guilty of groping women

Former Fresno State student Deandre Jean-Pierre, 23, was found guilty of two misdemeanor counts of sexual battery last Friday in Fresno Superior Court.

Jean-Pierre, who once played the role of Fresno State’s mascot, TimeOut, was taken to jail from the courthouse, according to The Fresno Bee.

At the end of November 2016, the Fresno Police Department notified university students that multiple victims had come forward with similar reports of alleged groping.

Police said the incidents occurred from October through December. The victims told police they were sexually harassed near University Village and Plaza Apartments.

Jean-Pierre was arrested on Dec. 2 as the prime suspect. He was bailed out the next day. Jean-Pierre pleaded not guilty in February to five misdemeanor charges of sexual battery.

Prosecutors dismissed one charge and Jean-Pierre later faced four charges of sexual battery. On Friday, a jury found him guilty of two counts. Jean-Pierre is now in custody and awaiting sentencing on Sept. 13.

Jean-Pierre’s attorney, Franz Criego, argues that his client is a victim of mistaken identity and an “overzealous prosecutor,” The Fresno Bee reported. The Collegian could not immediately reach him for comment Friday.