"He believed in this community", he said at a community vigil on Friday night. "Above and below Singh's picture were the words "vetted legal immigrant" and "protector" while the words "unvetted illegal immigrant" and "[alleged] murderer" were above and below Arriaga's.
Singh was found shot by other officers and taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said. He was taken back to Stanislaus County in the slain officer's handcuffs to face justice.
The 33-year-old Mexico native had gang affiliations and multiple Facebook pages with different names, the sheriff said.
Ronil Singh was shot.
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In an interview with Fox News on Thursday, Officer Singh's boss, Stanislaus County sheriff, Adam Christianson, drove home the connection between Singh's murder and the issue at the forefront of a Congressional budget battle.
When a gunfight broke out, Singh tried to defend himself but apparently did not hit the suspect, Christianson said.
The brother of Singh spoke during a press conference after the tragedy, during which he shared his thankfulness for the law enforcement's capture and sorrow for his loss.
This detail prompted President Donald Trump Thursday to weigh in on the manhunt. His spokesman said Friday that if the suspect was a known gang member, police could have informed federal authorities.
"This is a criminal illegal alien with prior criminal activity that should have been reported to ICE", Christianson said.
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Arriaga, a criminal from Mexico, had crossed the US border into Arizona illegally some time ago, Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson said at a separate news conference on Friday.
California Governor Jerry Brown, a Democrat, in signing the bill into law said it provided reassurance to undocumented immigrants without sacrificing public safety. Referring to the arrest, he said, "I was waiting for this to happen". Clearly we have to do better in terms of preventing these types of occurrences from taking place and keeping our law enforcement safe, to keep our communities safe.
He says while he does not want to politicize an officer's death, this discussion must be had.
"We can't ignore the fact that this could have been preventable", he said, adding that California Senate Bill 54 - which became law previous year - prohibited his department "from sharing any information with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (USICE) about this criminal gang member". "We should be focusing on criminal activity without political interference", he continued. "This is a man that I relieved on Christmas Day so he could go home and spend some time with his family and his newborn child".
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