Sheriff Warnke of Merced County, California, remarked, “Our worst fears have been verified” when the remains of a baby, her parents, and an uncle were recovered two days after they had been stolen.
Authorities said that on Wednesday, two days after a family of four was abducted, their bodies were discovered in a remote field in California’s Central Valley.
Sheriff Vernon H. Warnke of Merced County told reporters late Wednesday, “Our greatest concerns have been fulfilled.”
The sheriff’s office in Merced, California, roughly 115 miles southeast of Sacramento, reported on Monday that a baby, her parents, and her uncle had been stolen from the family’s trucking company.
The sheriff’s office said that security video from outside the store showed an armed guy pushing family members into a vehicle, with two of them having their hands seemingly zip-tied behind their backs.
California Sheriff Warnke Over Indian Sikh Family’s Murder
Aroohi Dheri, 8 months old, her mother Jasleen Kaur, 27, her father Jasdeep Singh, 36, and her uncle Amandeep Singh, 39, were all named by police.
The event has left Sheriff Warnke “angry beyond words,” he added. “I meant what I said earlier: this person deserves the hottest corner of hell.”
A farm worker in a “very remote” region reportedly discovered the remains at about 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday and contacted the sheriff’s office.
Authorities stated earlier on Wednesday that they had arrested 48-year-old Jesus Manuel Salgado, who was a person of interest in the case after he attempted suicide at his house in Atwater, California, which is located approximately 8 miles northwest of Merced.
Sheriff Warnke said later that day that Mr. Salgado had been communicating with officials, but he did not elaborate on the nature of their conversation or whether or not any charges had been filed.
Sheriff Warnke said during an earlier Wednesday press conference that Mr. Salgado had attempted suicide and was sedated at a hospital when law enforcement was alerted.
When Sheriff Warnke asked the family whether they had called the police in response to the suspect’s statements, they answered that they had. And rather than cooperate with authorities, he made an attempt on his own life.
The officials did not elaborate on Mr. Salgado’s contact with the family or what he had said to them. Earlier in the day, investigators were anxious to interview him, but Sheriff Warnke stated that whenever he began to regain consciousness he turned aggressive.
Sheriff Warnke said that the investigators had found no evidence linking the abduction to any specific criminal activity.
Sheriff Warnke added that in 2005, Mr. Salgado had been convicted of false imprisonment and armed robbery. Sheriff Warnke said that since Mr. Salgado’s release in 2015, the police had not had “any big interaction” with him.
After receiving word that one of the victim’s A.T.M. cards had been used at a bank in Atwater on Tuesday, investigators arrested Mr. Salgado.
The investigators received a photograph from a bank’s security footage of a person who resembled a person seen in a photograph from the trucking company where the kidnapping occurred.
Although the police have not named any accomplices, Sheriff Warnke said he believed at least one other individual was likely involved.
Amandeep Singh’s burning pickup was discovered near Winton, California, on Monday morning, around 13 miles north of Merced, according to the sheriff’s office. The family had been reported missing the day before.
The police tried to get in touch with Mr. Singh but were unable and ended up interviewing a member of his family in his place. According to the police report, that relative made many attempts to get in touch with Mr. Singh and other relatives but was unsuccessful.
The kidnapping of the four family members was confirmed by investigators on Monday afternoon.
Authorities say that Jasdeep Singh and Amandeep Singh were abducted from their family’s trucking company, and that surveillance video shows them leaving the facility with their wrists presumably tied behind their backs, followed by a guy with a rifle.
According to the surveillance tape, the vehicle leaves with them still inside, drives about for six minutes, and then comes back. The sheriff’s department said the same guy repeatedly enters the store and takes Ms. Kaur and the infant before leaving.