‘Horrific crime’: Father, stepmother of Roman Lopez arrested after 11-year-old’s dying

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The father and stepmother of Roman Lopez, an 11-year-old Placerville boy who died under circumstances police deemed suspicious, have been arrested more than a year after the child’s death, authorities said Thursday. Lindsay Piper, 38, and Jordan Piper, 36, are facing several charges, including child abuse, poisoning and torture, Placerville police and the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office said at a joint news conference Thursday. The couple was booked into Calaveras County Jail, which is where they had been living, authorities said.“This is a horrific crime that shocked the community,” said Placerville police Chief Joseph Wren. “The death of a child affects us all. Now it’s time for the perpetrators to face justice.”Roman was reported missing in January 2020. He was found dead hours later in a storage bin in the basement of the family’s home, and police said at the time that his death was suspicious and authorities were investigating. In the months following his death, officials had been tight-lipped about the case. Here’s a timeline of the investigation: Authorities said that although an autopsy conducted revealed no obvious trauma, Roman was found to be “severely malnourished and dehydrated at the time of his death,” the joint release says. Over the past year, authorities investigated the case, analyzing forensic evidence, combing through electronic devices and working with medical professionals, including experts in the field of child abuse. “We were looking for answers and each answer we obtained often times produced several other questions that required answers, as well,” said Placerville Police Chief Joseph Wren.Wren said gathering information about the boy’s family was also a challenge.“Adding to the complexity of this case was how often this family moved and the various agencies they had encountered,” the release says.At the time of Roman’s death, he was living in a home with his father, stepmother and seven other children whose ages ranged from 1 to 17 years old. The family had recently moved to Placerville and had only been in the house for a little over two months before Roman’s death. [/twitter]From the start of the investigation, the police department worked closely with the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office to make sure they had enough evidence to support the charges.District Attorney Vern Pierson said he is confident his office will be able to prosecute to charges brought forward on Wednesday.”We believe those we can prove beyond a reasonable doubt,” Pierson said. “And we will be pursing those charges.”He said all of the questions surrounding this case may never be answered. “In this case, unfortunately, there are components that, to this day, we’re confident in saying we will never actually know or have the ability to prove beyond a reasonable doubt,” Pierson said.It is a case that shocked the community.”The hearts and soul of our community was broken a little over a year ago when we learned of Roman’s death,” Mayor Dennis Thomas said. “We mourn the loss of a tender soul at such a young age. Our community has been impatiently waiting for this day.”This is a developing story. Stay with KCRA 3 for the latest.

The father and stepmother of Roman Lopez, an 11-year-old Placerville boy who died under circumstances police deemed suspicious, have been arrested more than a year after the child’s death, authorities said Thursday.

Lindsay Piper, 38, and Jordan Piper, 36, are facing several charges, including child abuse, poisoning and torture, Placerville police and the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office said at a joint news conference Thursday. The couple was booked into Calaveras County Jail, which is where they had been living, authorities said.

“This is a horrific crime that shocked the community,” said Placerville police Chief Joseph Wren. “The death of a child affects us all. Now it’s time for the perpetrators to face justice.”

Roman was reported missing in January 2020. He was found dead hours later in a storage bin in the basement of the family’s home, and police said at the time that his death was suspicious and authorities were investigating. In the months following his death, officials had been tight-lipped about the case.

Here’s a timeline of the investigation:

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Authorities said that although an autopsy conducted revealed no obvious trauma, Roman was found to be “severely malnourished and dehydrated at the time of his death,” the joint release says.

Over the past year, authorities investigated the case, analyzing forensic evidence, combing through electronic devices and working with medical professionals, including experts in the field of child abuse.

“We were looking for answers and each answer we obtained often times produced several other questions that required answers, as well,” said Placerville Police Chief Joseph Wren.

Wren said gathering information about the boy’s family was also a challenge.

“Adding to the complexity of this case was how often this family moved and the various agencies they had encountered,” the release says.

At the time of Roman’s death, he was living in a home with his father, stepmother and seven other children whose ages ranged from 1 to 17 years old. The family had recently moved to Placerville and had only been in the house for a little over two months before Roman’s death.

This content is imported from Twitter.
You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

From the start of the investigation, the police department worked closely with the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office to make sure they had enough evidence to support the charges.

District Attorney Vern Pierson said he is confident his office will be able to prosecute to charges brought forward on Wednesday.

“We believe those we can prove beyond a reasonable doubt,” Pierson said. “And we will be pursing those charges.”

He said all of the questions surrounding this case may never be answered.

“In this case, unfortunately, there are components that, to this day, we’re confident in saying we will never actually know or have the ability to prove beyond a reasonable doubt,” Pierson said.

It is a case that shocked the community.

“The hearts and soul of our community was broken a little over a year ago when we learned of Roman’s death,” Mayor Dennis Thomas said. “We mourn the loss of a tender soul at such a young age. Our community has been impatiently waiting for this day.”

This is a developing story. Stay with KCRA 3 for the latest.