Reggie Singh, brother of Indian-origin police officer Ronil "Ron" Singh killed in California and described a "national hero" by Donald Trump, has said his family fully supported the US president's efforts to bolster border security so that others do not experience what they have been going through since the tragedy.
Corporal Ronil Singh, 33, of Newman Police Department was shot and killed, allegedly by an illegal immigrant, during a traffic stop on 26 December last year.
During a high-profile visit to the southern border state of Texas on Thursday, 10 January, to push for his controversial US-Mexico border wall plan, Trump attended a border patrol roundtable at McAllen, where Reggie Singh was seated next to the president.
"“I watched a family right around Christmas time... suffer and I’d like to ask Reggie, maybe you could say a few words about your incredible brother, the job he was doing. He was so beloved by the people of the department and beyond.” " - US president Donald Trump
"The way he (Ronil Singh) was killed, what my family is going through right now, I do not want any other family, law enforcement person to go through that... Whatever it takes to minimise... put a stop to it, my family fully supports it,” Reggie Singh said in response to Trump’s statement.
In the last few days, Trump has made it a point to mention the killing of Singh by an illegal immigrant to build a strong case in favour of a stronger border security to prevent entry of illegal immigrants.
Because of the Democrats intransigence on Border Security and the great importance of Safety for our Nation, I am respectfully cancelling my very important trip to Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum. My warmest regards and apologies to the @WEF!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 10, 2019
"He (Ronil) always wanted to be in law enforcement. So, legally, we migrated to America to fulfil his dream of joining the law enforcement,” Reggie Singh said, adding that he and his brother are originally from Fiji.
"English is our second language. He worked on that, got his education, applied for law enforcement agency and he was asked to get his citizenship. He worked towards that and he became a cop, K-9, Corporal K-9," he said.
"At 33, Ronil Singh was cremated and I had to pick up his remains. It breaks my heart and no one should ever go through that. Seeing a five-month-old baby looking for his dad, no one should ever go through that on Christmas Day," Reggie told Trump.
The president, in his response, said "We are with you. You know that, right?... That was a tough one for a lot of people, not only the family, but for a lot of people in this country. That was a tough thing to watch.”
On Tuesday, 8 January, Trump said America’s heart broke the day the young officer was “savagely murdered” in cold blood by an “illegal alien”.
"America's heart broke the day after Christmas when a young police officer in California was savagely murdered in cold blood by an illegal alien (who) just came across the border. The life of an American hero was stolen by someone who had no right to be in our country," the US president had said.
The Californian police have arrested a 33-year-old illegal immigrant from Mexico, identified as Gustavo Perez Arriaga, on charges of killing Singh.
Trump has demanded $5.7 billion from Congress to construct a wall along the US-Mexico border, which he said is crucial to stop the flow of illegal immigrants and smuggling of drugs into the country.
We lose 300 Americans a week, 90% of which comes through the Southern Border. These numbers will be DRASTICALLY REDUCED if we have a Wall!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 11, 2019
The Democrats argue that constructing a wall is not the best use of taxpayers' money.
The sharp differences between the Trump administration and the opposition Democrats over border security has resulted in a partial government shutdown, which entered its 20th day on Thursday, making it the second-longest in history after the 21-day shutdown in 1995-96.
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