NEWMAN (CBS13) – A search is on for the suspect who fatally shot a police officer in the community of Newman early Wednesday morning.
The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department says, just after 12:30 a.m., 33-year-old officer Ronil Singh made a traffic stop at Merced Street and Eucalyptus Avenue in Newman. Singh pulled over the truck for not having any plates.
A few moments after making the stop, the officer called out “shots fired” over the radio. Multiple agencies responded to the scene but the suspect had taken off before they arrived.
The officer was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Surveillance photos of the suspect authorities are looking for have been released.
The truck that the man was believed to be driving was found in the 26000 block of River Road outside of Newman. The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department recovered the vehicle and is processing it for evidence.
Officials have not yet identified the suspect.
Exactly what led to Officer Singh being shot is still being investigated.
Officer Singh was a native of Fiji and had been with the Newman Police Department since July 2011.
“Our Newman Police family is devastated by the loss of Ronil,” said Newman Police Chief Randy Richardson in a statement.
Singh also served with the Turlock Police Department as a cadet. He served with the Merced County Sheriff’s Department.
“He chose to be the light in the darkness and to do so without hesitation,” the department wrote in a statement on Wednesday. “We are all devastated and are in mourning. He was loved and will always be in our hearts.”
Gov. Jerry Brown has released a statement on Singh’s death.
“On behalf of all Californians, Anne and I extend our condolences to Corporal Singh’s wife, young son, loved ones and colleagues. 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,” Gov. Brown wrote.
Singh leaves behind a wife and young son.
Anyone who sees the suspect or knows where he might be is asked to contact authorities immediately.
This is a developing story. Keep checking back for the latest information.