Meet Josue Pierre, the Rickenbacker Causeway Creeper. The 25-year-old has a skeevy way of trying to pick up women he doesn't know; groping the most intimate parts of their bodies. Four ladies jogging the William Powell Bridge along the causeway experienced Pierre's personal-space-invading mitts the morning of Aug. 13.
"If I had let him get away with it, he'd still be out there," says Maria, one of Pierre's victims who asked that her last name not be used. "That guy violated me."
According to a Miami Police arrest report, Pierre snuck up on his first victim from behind and rubbed his hands on her butt cheeks. She turned around and pushed him away. He went in the opposite direction and came upon his second victim, walking alongside her.
Pierre grabbed her left butt cheek. The startled woman turned to look at Pierre, who laughed and continued on his stroll. A few minutes later, he crossed paths with his third victim, rubbing his hand up and down her thigh. She shoved him and he kept on trucking.
Shortly after, Pierre saw Maria walking toward him and went for her groin. "He grabbed my vagina," she says. "I mean a full grip. I was stunned."
As she dialed 911 on her cellphone, Maria followed Pierre. "It took about 30 minutes for the officer to show up," Maria says. "But I was mad as hell. I wasn't going to lose sight of him."
When Ofcr. Joaquin Polanco had Pierre in custody, his other victims returned and provided their statements to the cop. "They had called 911 too, but no one had bothered to respond until I started chasing him," Maria says. "This is why people don't report crimes. They get discouraged."
According to his arrest report, Pierre allegedly told another officer that grabbing women was his "way of picking them up." He's been locked up in county jail since, but Maria fears he won't get any serious time and he'll be back on the Rickenbacker soon. Polanco only charged Pierre with misdemeanor battery. His arraignment hearing is Sept. 25.
Maria spoke to the case prosecutor who allegedly told her that he couldn't charge Pierre with sexual battery because he didn't penetrate her or the other women.
"That's why I'm mad," she says. "No one has the right to touch me or grab me."
Follow Francisco Alvarado on Twitter: @thefrankness.
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.