Newman, CA – Newman Police Department Corporal Ronil Singh was murdered in the line of duty on Wednesday morning, after he was shot by a suspect during a predawn traffic stop.
“Our Newman Police family is devastated by the loss of Ronil,” Newman Police Chief Randy Richardson said in a press release. “If anyone has any information regarding the identity of the suspect, please contact law enforcement immediately so we can get this cop-killer off the streets.”
The fatal altercation began at 12:57 a.m., when Cpl. Singh checked out on a traffic stop at Eucalyptus Avenue and Merced Street.
Just moments later, he radioed there had been “shots fired” at the scene, and officers from multiple agencies immediately responded to his location.
They found Cpl. Singh, 33, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.
He was rushed to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
The unidentified suspect fled the scene prior to the other officers’ arrival, and police are asking for the public’s help to identify and locate him.
The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department released a photograph of the suspect, and said he may be driving a gray, extended-cab Dodge Ram pickup.
Cpl. Singh, a native of Fiji, served the Newman Police Department for over seven years.
He was also a K9 handler, and was partnered up with Newman Police Department’s K9 Sam at the time of his murder, according to The Sacramento Bee.
He previously served with the Merced County Sheriff’s Department and the Turlock Police Department, The Modesto Bee reported.
Turlock Police Chief Nino Amirfar said that Cpl. Singh joined the department as a cadet, and described him as a “good man," according to The Sacramento Bee.
“His dream and desire was to be a police officer and to be there to serve his community,” Chief Amirfar said. “He chose to be the light in the darkness and to do so without hesitation. We are all devastated and are in mourning. He was loved and will always be in our hearts.”
“The love of community and humanity keeps the light of good burning bright and your police officers are the torch bearers and the guardians,” the chief continued. “Evil will never triumph over good.”
In a Facebook post on Wednesday, Cpl. Singh’s uncle, Ugesh Yogi Singh, described his nephew as “adventurous,” and said he was the family’s “action hero.”
He said Cpl. Singh was working a Christmas night overtime shift at the time of his murder.
“He was a great role model for our next generation of Indo Americans,” Singh wrote.
Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Raj Singh told KCRA he was not related to Cpl. Singh, but that they were friends and have worked together over the years.
"He was living the American Dream,” Deputy Singh said. “He immigrated here from the Fiji Islands, just like my parents did, and was definitely enjoying the American Dream.”
Cpl. Singh leaves behind his wife, Anamika, and their five-month-old son, California Governor Edmund Brown said in a statement.
“On behalf of all Californians, Anne and I extend our condolences to Corporal Singh’s wife, young son, loved ones and colleagues,” Brown said. “Our hearts are with the entire community of Newman and law enforcement officers across the state who risk their lives every day to protect and serve the people of California.”
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Newman Police Department Corporal Ronil Singh, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Cpl. Ronil Singh, your life mattered.