A California woman abused and killed her stepson. Now, she heads to prison for decades.
This month, El Dorado County Court Judge Vicky Ashworth sentenced Lindsay Piper, 40, to life in prison with the possibility of parole for the death of 11-year-old Roman Lopez.
Piper pleaded guilty to no contest to second-degree murder after authorities upgraded her charges from child abuse, poisoning, and torture.
On Jan. 11, 2020, officers responded to the defendant's home, which she shared with her husband and the victim’s father, Jordan Piper, on Coloma Street in Placerville, California, after reports of a missing child. According to prosecutors, a few hours into the search, Lopez’s body was located in the storage bin of the couple’s rented home basement.
“After an initial search of the home was unsuccessful, a second more extensive search of the home was launched,” said Placerville Police Chief Joseph Wren, reported FOX 40.
As a result, the Pipers were immediately placed under arrest.
An autopsy report established no evidence of trauma, but the boy had suffered from severe starvation and dehydration at the time of his demise.
Later, investigators charged Lindsay Piper with willfully mingling a poison and harmful substance with food, drinks, and other pharmaceutical products, according to The Sacramento Bee.
The 36-year-old Jordan Piper was also charged with additional counts of willfully failing to provide food, clothing, medication, and shelter.
During the investigation, authorities found over 400 nude videos of an underage girl on Jordan Piper’s phone. The videos showed the girl taking a bath and using the bathroom. The footage was discovered in the Placerville residence after authorities watched another video where Jordan Piper removed a camera from behind a bathroom wall in a previously rented home in Groveland, California.
As a result, the FBI charged the defendant with one count of sexual exploitation of a child.
At the time of Lopez’s death, the Pipers cared for seven other children between 1 and 17 years old.
Lindsay Piper is currently awaiting transfer to prison. She will be eligible for parole after serving 15 years. On the other hand, her husband remains at the Sacramento County Jail to face the federal charges. In addition, the murder charge he faces for Lopez’s homicide is still pending.