Former South Lake Tahoe business owner pleads guilty to child molestation

Lou Fiori is remanded to custody after entering guilty plea.
Ashleigh Goodwin/Tahoe Daily Tribune

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — South Lake Tahoe local and former business owner, Louis Williams Fiori, pled guilty Monday to two felony counts of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under the age of 14.

The guilty plea was entered after the initial hearing was continued

In exchange for a deal, Fiori is expected to serve two concurrent life sentences in prison, according to the prosecution.

The disposition read in court Monday by Deputy District Attorney Kassie Cardullo, led the guilty party to take accountability for lewd or lascivious acts, committed not once but multiple times over an extended period. 

According to the original criminal information filed for the case: The People of the State of California v. Louis Williams Fiori, the abuse occurred between February 1999 to November 2014.

Twice the victims attempted to get justice and protection, once at the ages of 7 and 8, a second time at ages 12 and 13, according to the bail motion filed in October of 2021 by the District Attorney’s office.

The motion stated the victims, sisters, were made out to be liars by Fiori and not believed by their mother, the defendant’s current wife. 

“After some disclosures to law enforcement, no one believed [them],” the bail motion stated.

Fiori acknowledged and apologized for the continuous molestation of his two step daughters which had been twice reported and dismissed, according to the bail motion filed by Cardullo. 

Fiori’s accountability came only after being caught for additional obscene crimes against children, more than 400 miles away from South Lake Tahoe, in Riverside.

ln 2021, the defendant was arrested in Riverside County for possession of child pornography where he ultimately confessed to the sexual abuse of his two step daughters. 

Plea hearing with presiding Judge Smith.
Ashleigh Goodwin/Tahoe Daily Tribune

Before Judge Thomas A. Smith, Fiori entered a guilty plea with barely an audible whisper and a feeble shrug.

Cardullo said, “Your honor I couldn’t hear him,” after which Judge Smith required Fiori to repeat himself.

It was expressed by the tough-on-crime deputy D.A. that Fiori needed to acknowledge each felony count by entering separate pleas for sex crimes committed against each of his step daughters.

Earlier this month Cardullo told the Tribune that in California’s three-strikes system, Fiori, if ever released, would immediately be subject to another life sentence if he was to be convicted of a third strike.

“Fiori is currently facing pending charges in Riverside County and will still need to resolve his case in Riverside despite his plea in the El Dorado case,” according to Cardullo.

El Dorado County is known, even to criminals, as tough on crime. 

“It makes me proud to be able to work in a county that actually enforces the laws so we can better protect victims,” Cardullo told the Tribune.

The El Dorado District Attorney’s Office posted a phone call recording on social media, between an unidentified male and an inmate, discussing how tough El Dorado County is on crime in comparison to other counties.

Kyle Neddenriep, Fiori’s defense attorney, had no comment. 

Judge Smith ruled Fiori be remanded to custody, without bail, to be sentenced on May 15.

Lou Fiori with defense attorney Kyle Neddenriep.
Ashleigh Goodwin/Tahoe Daily Tribune

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