Suspect in California kidnapping is in custody; 8-month-old and family are still missing

A person of interest in the Monday abduction of four family members is in custody, but the whereabouts of the family remains unknown.

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Jesus Manuel Salgado, 48, tried to take his life before law enforcement took him into custody, according to the Merced Sheriff’s department.

Eight-month-old Aroohi Dheri and her parents, 27-year-old mother Jasleen Kaur and 36-year-old father Jasdeep Singh, were kidnapped from a business in Merced County in Northern California on Monday.

The baby’s uncle, 39-year-old Amandeep Singh, was also kidnapped, Merced County Sheriff Vern Warnke said.

According to Warnke, Salgado is in critical condition.

The hunt for the family intensified Tuesday as law enforcement believed they had surveillance footage of the suspect making a withdrawal from an ATM using one of the victims’ debit cards.

The sheriff’s office released a photo of the man from the surveillance footage said they believed that he was the suspect in the kidnapping, but later said the person in the photo was not the person of interest.

Warnke said they do not know where the family is and that no motive for the abductions is known.

“We don’t know if there’s prior history” with the person of interest and the family, Warnke said Tuesday.

“My husband is very peaceful and calm person,” Jaspreet Caur, wife of the kidnapped uncle said Tuesday. “We don’t have any clue why they kidnapped them.”

Amandeep Singh’s truck was found on fire on Tuesday, Warnke said.

Merced is about 125 miles southeast of San Francisco in the San Joaquin Valley. Anyone with information on the family’s whereabouts is asked to call the Merced County Sheriff’s Office at 209-385-7445.

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