A man charged with killing his 11-year-old son, who was found dead in a storage bin after being reported missing from their Placerville home, is now accused of sexually exploiting an underage girl in the home in the preceding months.
Jordan Piper, Lindsay Piper. (Placerville Police Department)
Jordan Piper, 37, was to appear Thursday in federal court on the sexual exploitation charge. He has been held without bail in El Dorado County Jail since February 2021.
The criminal complaint from the FBI said evidence that Piper secretly recorded videos of the girl in the bathroom was found during the investigation into the death of the boy, Roman Lopez. The videos were made from October 2019 to January 2020 in the Placerville home and in the family’s previous home, in Groveland.
More than 400 explicit images taken from the videos were found on Piper’s phone, with the girl in “various states of undress and usually nude,” the FBI said. Also found were text messages in which Piper discussed with her a “sexual ‘Christmas gift’” and offered her $250 to use the gift, the FBI said.
The penalty in the sexual exploitation case is up to 30 years in prison, plus a fine and parole.
Jordan Piper and his wife, Lindsay Piper, moved to Placerville in December 2019 with eight children ranging from 1 to 17 years old: Roman, who was Jordan Piper’s son; Lindsay Piper’s four teenagers from a previous marriage; and three young children who were in her care.
Roman was reported missing by his father on Jan. 11, 2020. Within hours, police found his body in a storage bin in the basement.
Jordan and Lindsay Piper were charged with second-degree murder; child abuse likely to cause great bodily injury or death; and causing cruel and extreme pain for revenge, extortion or sadistic purpose.
The Pipers pleaded not guilty to those charges, but last month Lindsay Piper changed her plea in the murder case to no contest. She is scheduled to be sentenced July 8.
Among the allegations are that Lindsay Piper, 40, poisoned her stepson’s food or drink. He was reportedly malnourished and dehydrated when he died.
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In an interview with TV station KOVR shortly after the boy’s death, a Wisconsin woman named Rochelle Lopez said she was Roman’s mother and had lost custody to Jordan Piper after she returned from military service in Iraq with post-traumatic stress disorder and an addiction to painkillers. She said she learned of her son’s death from a news report online.
Rochelle Lopez died in April 2021.
A Michigan woman told the Sacramento Bee that the three younger children were hers and that she had put them in the care of Lindsay Piper, who then moved out of state without her knowledge. The children were returned to her after Roman’s death.