Merced Kidnapping: Suspect Jesus Salgado pleads not guilty; family funeral being held Saturday

Relatives announced that the family will be laid to rest on Saturday in Turlock. The funeral will be closed to the public.

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Friday, October 14, 2022
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Jesus Salgado appeared in Merced County Superior court on Thursday morning wearing shackles and a safety garment.

MERCED, Calif. (KFSN) -- Jesus Salgado appeared in Merced County Superior court on Thursday morning wearing shackles and a safety garment.

He's accused of kidnapping and killing Jasdeep Singh, Jasleen Kaur, their 8-month-old baby Aroohi Dheri, and the baby's uncle, Amandeep Singh.

It's the first time their family members have seen Salgado in person since their bodies were found in an orchard near Dos Palos last Wednesday.

RELATED: Merced kidnapping: The next steps in court case of 4 family members murdered

The 48-year-old entered a not guilty plea to all of the charges he's facing, including four counts of first-degree murder with special circumstances.

Salgado was in court four days prior on Monday, but his arraignment was continued after he told the judge he needed more time to find an attorney.

On Thursday, he told the judge he still did not find an attorney, so he was appointed a public defender.

A large group of the victims' loved ones gathered at the courthouse for the second time this week in a show of solidarity. They are now planning a funeral for this weekend, while grieving an unimaginable loss.

RELATED: Criminal psychologist weighs in on possible mindset of kidnapping and murder suspect Jesus Salgado

Just hours after Jesus Salgado's hearing, his brother, Alberto appeared in court for the first time.

He's now charged with criminal conspiracy, accessory and arson. He was smiling when he first appeared over video and made comments the victims' family felt were disrespectful.