Merced kidnapping: Charges filed against Jesus Salgado, accused of the kidnapping, murder of family

Tuesday, October 11, 2022
Merced kidnapping: Charges filed against murder suspect
Charges were filed Monday against the two brothers arrested in the kidnapping and murder of a Merced family.

MERCED, Calif. (KFSN) -- "Part of me doesn't even want to call this person a human. This is not a human being. This is evil."

Dozens of family members and supporters gathered at the courthouse in Merced Monday, filled with grief.

RELATED: Merced Kidnapping: Brother of suspect arrested, booked into Merced County Jail

Jesus Salgado made his first court appearance over video while wearing a safety smock.

The judge read his charges.

Hours earlier, prosecutors charged the 48-year-old with four counts of first-degree murder with special circumstances, along with arson and possession of a firearm by a felon.

Mandeep Bhela is a family member of the victims and says seeing Salgado in the courtroom was painful.

Investigators say Salgado abducted the four victims at gunpoint from their family business on Highway 59 last Monday.

Salgado was arrested last Tuesday, and on Wednesday, the search for the family came to a tragic end.

The bodies of eight-month-old Aroohi Dheri, her parents Jasdeep Singh and Jasleen Kaur, and her uncle Amandeep Singh were found in an orchard near Dos Palos.

RELATED: Merced kidnapping: Family remembers 4 who were kidnapped, murdered

Deputies say Salgado tried to take his own life before he was taken into custody.

His brother, Alberto Salgado is accused of helping with the crimes - he was arrested for criminal conspiracy, accessory and destroying evidence.

He has also been arrested but not yet charged.

Monday, the victims' loved ones said they will continue to fight for justice.

"We understand that this can be excruciatingly painfully slow, but we will support law enforcement, the system and the way that it needs to be done so that we can make sure that justice is truly served at the end of the day," Bhela said.