Pierce cared only for his image, and that of his friend Veronica. She was desperately trying to come up with a way to get back into the public eye. Pierce remembered a previous party, hosted by Muffy Van Alten, which was robbed by the Joker, and he suggested that they invite the recently released Penguin to their party. Veronica was excited about the idea, and set up a meeting.
Pierce and Veronica's motives were strictly sadistic, however. They wanted to make a fool of the Penguin, and the party was a success. Penguin made faux-pas after faux-pas, and insulted almost everyone present. Unfortunately, he overheard Pierce and Veronica talk about their ruse, and ambushed them. He abducted Veronica, but Pierce's part was not yet played. Penguin demanded a million dollars from the Vreeland trust, and Pierce had to make the drop.
The plan led Pierce to a pay phone, and Penguin called and ordered him to walk out of the booth, straight into a trap. After a short trip through the sewers, he found Penguin and Veronica in the Opera building. There, Penguin trapped him under a chandelier, to which Veronica was attached, and prepared to cut the rope. Batman intervened and managed to hold off the execution, but a flame from the ensuing fight did set the chandelier's rope on fire. Pierce huddled down as the chandelier came closer and closer, but Batman managed to hold onto the rope and stop it in time. After the Penguin was taken out, police freed Pierce with a blow torch.