Harrison County

An award-winning contractor faces fraud charge over a new home in Biloxi

Builder Jeremy Pierpont in 2009 in the kitchen of his Woolmarket home with wife Blakeney. Pierpont was recently indicted on a felony charge, and the contractor’s license of his Gulf Coast Builders LLC was revoked in 2016 for failure to pay bills.
Builder Jeremy Pierpont in 2009 in the kitchen of his Woolmarket home with wife Blakeney. Pierpont was recently indicted on a felony charge, and the contractor’s license of his Gulf Coast Builders LLC was revoked in 2016 for failure to pay bills. jcfitzhugh@sunherald.com File

Award-winning home builder Jeremy Pierpont of Gulfport has been indicted on a charge of false pretense based on a sworn statement he submitted to a Biloxi couple in exchange for a $60,000 payment for work on a home in Eagle Point.

The consumer protection division of the state Attorney General’s Office is prosecuting the case. The indictment says the sworn statement Pierpont presented for the payment was false.

The statement stipulated that Pierpont had paid for all work performed under the contract through June 2015, when he requested the payment.

A spokeswoman for Attorney General Jim Hood said the office could provide no details on the charge because the case is ongoing.

Pierpont’s attorney, Chris Smith of Gulfport, was in Circuit Court on Monday morning, where the case was continued until a trial date can be set.

“We don’t know exactly what the theory of prosecution is,” Smith said. “The actual work on the home was done. ... We don’t think he’s done anything wrong — certainly nothing criminal.”

Smith said on March 1 he requested information from the state’s investigation, which defendants are entitled to receive, but does not have those details yet.

Pierpont is a managing member of Gulf Coast Builders, a limited liability company the Secretary of State’s Office lists as dissolved.

He has a contractor’s license, according to the Mississippi State Board of Contractors, but his status is “inactive.”

The contractor’s license for Gulf Coast Builders was revoked in April 2016 for failure to pay for goods and services, according to the Mississippi Board of Contractors. The company failed to pay a total of $126,471 owed to Bailey Lumber Co.

Gulf Coast Builders filed for bankruptcy in October 2015, listing assets of $216,500 and liabilities of $1.2 million, federal court records show.

Pierpont is an officer in two other companies that are in good standing, the secretary of state’s website shows: GCB Property Management and GCB Real Estate, both LLCs.

He is a past president and director of the Home Builders Association of the Mississippi Coast.

His LinkedIn profile describes him as a residential builder in business since 2000. It also says he won an award in 2012 for best bathroom in Mississippi.

In 2010, Pierpont won $50,000 in a state competition for designing the best “green home,” an energy-saving house he built in the Hidden Oaks subdivision of Gulfport.

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