Protecting Cop Killers, Ignoring Their Victims

Reggie Singh, the brother of Newman police Corporal Ronil Singh

Shots fired!” radioed Newman, California, police officer Ronil Singh after pulling over a suspected drunk driver the day after Christmas. Those were the last words of Cpl. Singh, a legal immigrant from Fiji. His killer turned out to be someone who “doesn’t belong here,” as Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson said. “He is a criminal.”

Outgoing California Governor Jerry Brown offered condolences to Singh’s family and said flags at the capitol would fly at half-staff in his honor. “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,” Brown said. The governor mentioned nothing about the shooter, and neither did Attorney General Xavier Becerra. Considering the grandstanding and pandering of both politicians on immigration, both have good reasons to keep quiet.

Gustavo Perez Arriaga—or whatever his real name is—has gang connections and two previous DUI arrests. As former New York mayor and Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani told Fox News, the September 2017 Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act would have given authorities the ability to take immigration enforcement action against the shooter, even if he had not been convicted of a crime. The measure passed the House along party lines in the last session, but the Senate took a pass.

The shooter of officer Singh “should’ve been taken in for being a drunk driver . . . There was special legislation to focus on gang members. Most of the Democrats voted against it. Almost every Republican voted for it. Had that legislation been in place, this murder may very well not have happened,” Giuliani said. On the other hand, the gang connections would be of no importance to Becerra, a former congressman once on Hillary Clinton’s short list as a running mate.

Becerra prefers to target those who report illegals to federal authorities. On Becerra’s watch, MS-13 has inflicted a reign of terror in Mendota, near Fresno. The gang has murdered 14 people, hacking victims to death with machetes and leaving the mutilated bodies on display.

Becerra took no action against MS-13 until the feds stepped in, and even then the attorney general made it clear he was not concerned with the gang’s “status.” In similar style, the attorney general is not concerned whether the gang member who killed officer Singh “belongs here.”

Like Jerry Brown, and new governor Gavin Newsom, Becerra is a supporter of SB54, California’s sanctuary state law. Those police officers who, as Brown said, “risk their lives every day,” don’t particularly care for it.

“While we absolutely need to stay focused on officer Singh’s service and sacrifice, we can’t ignore the fact that this could’ve been preventable,” Sheriff Christianson said in the press conference. “And under SB54 in California, based on two arrests for DUI and some other active warrants that this criminal has out there, law enforcement would’ve been prevented, prohibited from sharing any information with ICE about this criminal gang member. Ladies and gentlemen, this is not how you protect a community.”

SB54 author Kevin de León, whose name on voter rolls is Kevin Alexander Leon, claims his father is a Chinese cook from Guatemala. De León issued no public statement on the killing of Ronil Singh. Backers of SB54 claim that it will encourage illegals to cooperate with police, but in this crime illegals protected the fugitive. After the shooting, police made seven arrests, including Arriaga’s brother, and brought charges of aiding and abetting the suspect.

While Arriaga was still on the run, President Trump tweeted, “There is right now a full scale manhunt going on in California for an illegal immigrant accused of shooting and killing a police officer during a traffic stop. Time to get tough on Border Security. Build the Wall!” San Francisco Democrat Nancy Pelosi believes the border wall is “immoral,”and has shown a soft spot for the “divine spark” in MS-13 gang members. Pelosi issued no public statement on the slaying of Singh, and neither did Senator Dianne Feinstein, who also failed to cite the officer’s death as an example of “gun violence.”

Meanwhile, a bigger caravan is already gathering in Honduras, doubtless jostling with MS-13 gangsters aiming to replace those Trump has deported. With collaboration from Mexico, this group will head to the farthest point on the border, California, because the Golden State has made false-documented illegals a privileged, protected class that includes criminal gang members.

Until that changes, more American citizens and law-abiding legal immigrants are certain to fall. Officer Ronil Singh leaves behind a wife, Anamika, and a son, five months old.

Photo Credit: Doug Duran/Bay Digital First Media/The Mercury News via Getty Images

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About Lloyd Billingsley

Lloyd Billingsley is the author of Hollywood Party and other books including Bill of Writes and Barack ‘em Up: A Literary Investigation. His journalism has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Spectator (London) and many other publications. Billingsley serves as a policy fellow with the Independent Institute.