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Jesus Salgado, suspect in Merced kidnapping, killing booked into jail

The suspect in the kidnapping and killing of a Merced family was booked into jail.

MERCED COUNTY, Calif. — The suspected kidnapper and killer of a Merced family was booked into jail on multiple counts of murder and kidnapping, the sheriff's office announced Thursday.

Jesus Manuel Salgado was identified as the suspect in the case and faces four counts each of kidnapping and murder charges.

Deputies accused Salgado of kidnapping and killing 8-month-old Aroohi Dheri, her mother Jasleen Kaur (27), her father Jasdeep Singh (36) and her uncle Amandeep Singh (39) after allegedly taking them against their will from their trucking business near South Highway 59.

Officials said one of the victim's ATM cards was used in the city of Atwater, and shortly after, they identified Salgado as the person of interest in the case.

Deputies said he tried to take his own life, but he ultimately ended up in custody. The search for the family eventually came to a tragic end when deputies said the family was found in an orchard near Indiana Road and Hutchinson Road in Merced County.

Salgado was a former employee who had a longstanding dispute with the family that “got pretty nasty,” Sheriff Vern Warnke said. A family spokesperson told ABC 30 that Salgado was a former employee who used to drive for the victim's company. 

Relatives of the slain family told investigators that Salgado had sent angry text messages or emails about a year ago after working with their trucking business, Warnke said.

Authorities continue to question the suspect about an accomplice.

 “I believe that he had someone else with him and at least helping him do some of the things. As far as the homicide itself, we are going to let the evidence take us where it needs to take us,” Warnke said.


Breaking | Missing Merced family of 4 found dead, County Sheriff announces

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