NEWMAN -- It’s an event meant to build a stronger relationship between law enforcement and the communities they serve and protect.
Tuesday started like any other National Night Out, with kids playing, grills churning out endless hot dogs and adults catching up.
But by early evening, the mood in downtown Newman changed.
It has been nearly eight months since Corporal Ronil Singh was shot and killed the day after Christmas while on duty during a traffic stop.
Outside his Newman Police Department, a memorial with Singh’s picture was unveiled. Singh’s young son pulled back the flag covering the monument honoring his dad.
“It’s like tearing off the Band-Aid as they say,” said Newman Police Chief Randy Richardson. “It’s a difficult process but a great honor also.”
Chief Richardson said he has only recently been able to come to grips with losing a member of their small department. He has relied on everyone in Newman to help him heal.
“It means the world to us,” he said. “Without the community support and the family support, our department support, I don’t know that we would’ve all made it through it.”
Those who worked with Singh and members of the community say the fallen officer helped their loved ones when they needed help.
“One thing about Ron is that he helped our daughter. Instead of arresting her, he talked to her and brought her home,” said Richard Gaytan.
Gaytan and his wife, Loveada Fresquez, said over the years their daughter battled drug use. They said Singh counseled her, wanting desperately to help turn her life around.
“Trying to get her on the right path and he would still be doing that to this day if he was here,” Fresquez told FOX40. “He’s a good man. He was a good man.”