A small community in California is in shock this week after the terrifying kidnapping of an entire family — including an infant.
The Merced County Sheriff’s Office is asking the public for any help they can provide in a desperate search for three adults and a child who were abducted at gunpoint in broad daylight on Monday. According to the release, an armed man took 8-month-old Aroohi Dheri, her parents Jasleen Kaur, 27, and Jasdeep Singh, 36, and Jasdeep’s elder brother Amandeep Singh, 39, from a business in the 800 Block of South Highway 59 in South Merced.
No motive for the shocking crime is known, no ransom has been demanded. It’s left authorities at the end of their rope. In a video posted to Facebook on Monday, Sheriff Vernon Warnke got emotional while asking for help, venting:
“We have a lowlife out there that kidnapped an 8-month-old baby, her mom, her dad, and her uncle. So far we have no idea why the kidnapping… Or the motivation behind it. We just know that they are gone.”
Sheriff Warnke noted that investigators have reason to believe the individual — or “individuals” — involved destroyed evidence to cover their tracks. He did not offer specifics but added:
“We need your help locate the family and possibly identify the suspect.”
See the full plea (below):
The sheriff revealed the FBI and California Department of Justice are already involved with local law enforcement. Authorities have been canvassing the area, including with aircraft, but so far they’ve turned up no sign of the family. Warnke vowed:
“People are gonna be working 24 hours on this until we get a break in this. We’ve got to bring this family home safely.”
Just a couple hours after the initial post, they did get more information — a look at a man they are considering a suspect in the kidnapping, a “light-complected male with a shaved head.” He is considered armed and dangerous, so while civilians are urged to contact police, they are also warned not to approach him or to try to help the victims.
Get your look at the potential kidnapper (below):
We just hope this abduction can be resolved with the family found safely. If you know anything that can help, please do. Investigators are asking anyone with information to call the Merced County Sheriff’s Office at (209)385-7445.
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