California family kidnapping: Suspect worked for family, baby left for dead, spokesman says

MERCED COUNTY, California — All four of the bodies of family members who were abducted from a store in central California’s Merced County earlier this week have been found.

Merced County Sheriff Vern Warnke said the bodies of 36-year-old Jasdeep Singh, 27-year-old Jasleen Kaur, their eight-month-old child Aroohi Dheri and the baby’s uncle, 39-year-old Amandeep Singh, were found Wednesday night found in an orchard near Indiana and Hutchins Roads.

A family spokesman told Action News that the prime suspect in the kidnapping and murder, Jesus Manuel Salgado, is a former employee who used to drive for the victims’ trucking company.

They had a disagreement and went their separate ways.

The spokesperson also revealed that the baby Aroohi Dheri was presumed dead and died from the exposure.

Action News also learned that Amandeep Singh is survived by his wife and two teenage children.

The City of Merced has announced that there will be a candlelight vigil for the family every evening from October 6-9 at 7 p.m.

On Monday, family members were abducted from a Merced County store.

Warnke said a farm worker found the bodies near the orchard and immediately contacted authorities.

TIED TOGETHER: Merced County kidnapping: New video shows suspect kidnapping two family members, mother and baby

All bodies were found close together.

“There are no words to describe the anger I feel,” Warnke said during a press conference on Wednesday evening. “There’s a special place in Hell for this guy.”

Earlier Wednesday, the Merced County Sheriff’s Office released a chilling new video showing the moment the family was kidnapped.

Jasdeep and Amandeep Singh emerged from the store with their hands tied. Moments later, video shows the kidnapper leading Jasleen Kaur and her 8-month-old baby Aroohi Dheri out of the building and into a truck.

TIED TOGETHER: 4 family members abducted from Merced store, suspect’s picture released

Salgado was taken into custody Tuesday afternoon and taken to hospital in critical condition after attempting suicide.

He was booked into the Merced County Jail Thursday night and faces four counts of murder and four counts of kidnapping.

The sheriff’s office said Salgado’s own family contacted authorities and reported that he admitted to them that he was involved in the family’s kidnapping.

Warnke said that although no evidence leads to this, he believes another suspect may be connected.

Copyright © 2022 KFSN-TV. All rights reserved. California family kidnapping: Suspect worked for family, baby left for dead, spokesman says

Laura Coffey

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