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Shooter’s brother sentenced in police corporal’s murder
Conrado Virgen Mendoza
Conrado Virgen Mendoza

The final defendant charged in connection with the death of Newman Police Cpl. Ronil Singh has been sentenced, the Department of Justice reported.

Conrado Virgen Mendoza, 37, a native and citizen of Mexico residing in Chowchilla, was sentenced Monday to 21 months in prison for conspiring with others to assist his brother in fleeing to Mexico to avoid prosecution for the murder of Singh and for possessing false immigration documents, Acting U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

Singh was shot to death on Dec. 26, 2018 by Paulo Virgen Mendoza during a traffic stop.

In September 2019, a jury found Conrado Virgen Mendoza guilty, along with Erik Quiroz Razo, 30, an illegal alien residing in Merced. The evidence at trial established that Virgen and Quiroz helped Paulo Virgen Mendoza conceal the truck that he was driving at the time he shot and killed Corporal Singh, transported him to various locations in the Central Valley in an effort to find a safe harbor with relatives before Paulo attempted to flee to Mexico. Conrado Virgen Mendoza lied to Stanislaus County Sheriff officers about Paulo Virgen Mendoza’s whereabouts. Paulo Virgen Mendoza was ultimately apprehended at a relative’s residence in Kern County following an intensive three-day manhunt.

In November 2020, Paulo Virgen Mendoza pleaded guilty to murdering Corporal Singh and was sentenced to life in prison without parole. Quiroz was previously sentenced to 27 months in federal prison.

Paulo Virgen Mendoza’s girlfriend, Ana Leydi Cervantes Sanchez, 31, an illegal alien from Michoacán, Mexico, who was residing with Paulo in Newman, was sentenced October 2019 to one year and one day in prison after previously pleading guilty to conspiring to aid and abet Paulo’s flight to avoid prosecution for murder, conspiring to harbor an illegal alien, and harboring an illegal alien.

Paulo Virgen Mendoza’s brother, Adrian Virgen Mendoza, 26, an illegal alien from Colima, Mexico, previously pleaded guilty to conspiring to aid and abet his brother’s flight to avoid prosecution for murder and was sentenced to one year and nine months in prison.

Bernabe Madrigal Castañeda, 60, an illegal alien of Colima, Mexico, also previously entered a guilty plea to the conspiracy and was sentenced to one year and one day in prison.

Shortly before 1 a.m. Dec. 26, 2018, Singh stopped Paulo Virgen Mendoza on suspicion of drunk driving. A few minutes into the stop, he called out shots fired over the radio. Multiple agencies responded to assist and Singh was found at the scene with gunshot wounds. He was transported to Emanuel Medical Center in Turlock, where he was pronounced deceased.

Singh was a native of Fiji who came to the United States to pursue his dream of a career in law enforcement. Singh started his law enforcement career as a volunteer with the Modesto Police Department and then served as a cadet and animal service officer with the Turlock Police Department. He worked in Turlock from 2006 to 2010 and then joined the Merced County Sheriff’s Department as a deputy in 2010. He came to the Newman Police Department in 2011. He graduated Modesto Junior College in 2009 with a degree in criminal justice.

Singh was survived by his wife and young son.