Charges Declined On Seven Arrested At Sunsplash
June 27, 2018
R. Scott Owens
PLACER COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY
10810 Justice Center Drive, Suite 240
Roseville, California 95678
For Immediate Release
June 27, 2018
Contact: Jeff Wilson, Assistant District Attorney
CHARGES DECLINED ON SEVEN ARRESTED AT SUNSPLASH
The Placer County District Attorney’s Office has been provided with the completed investigation of seven men who were arrested on May 28th, 2018, for allegedly conspiring to sexually assault young female juveniles at Golfland Sunsplash (Sunsplash) in Roseville, CA. The investigation was conducted by the Investigation Division of the Roseville Police Department at the request of the District Attorney. The investigation included gathering video surveillance during the time of the incident and the statements of witnesses present, near or about the time of the alleged incident. As part of the investigation the juveniles that were identified as victims of the sexual assault were interviewed by experts in the forensic interviewing of minors.
The evidence was reviewed as to each of the seven individuals arrested to determine if each was involved in a conspiracy to commit or committed a sexual assault against the alleged victims. To prove there was a conspiracy there must be an agreement between parties to commit a crime and an act in furtherance of the criminal objective. In order to commit a sexual assault of a minor it is necessary to prove that the touching was done not inadvertently but with a sexual intent. It was necessary to determine not only if an assault took place but whether the victim(s) can identify the individual(s) who assaulted them. Our office must prove the above beyond a reasonable doubt to a unanimous jury of twelve people.
The results of the extensive investigation by Roseville detectives demonstrated that, contrary to the initial reports, there was never any evidence of any conspiracy or any evidence that all of the alleged suspects were engaged in any coordinated effort to touch the juvenile females. Furthermore, no evidence exists of any criminal conduct against six of the seven suspects that were arrested. It is clear that officers took action to alleviate a tense and chaotic situation. What is unclear is what the evidentiary basis was for the initial arrest of six of the individuals. Those individuals are Gursharanpal Banga, 34 of Salinas, Manpreet Singh Dhillon, 26 of Manteca, Lakhveer Singh Gill, 30 of Manteca, Baljinder Singh Khaira, 38 of Manteca, Balwinder Singh Malhi, 32 of Manteca, Harpreet Singh Talwar, 18 of Pittsburgh. Accordingly, our office has declined to file charges based on the absence of any evidence of criminal misconduct.
There was circumstantial evidence against Dharampal Singh, 21 of Manteca, which served as a basis for his arrest. That evidence, however, is insufficient to prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt. This is not based on a lack of confidence in the allegations made by the victims in the case. It is based on the inability of the victims to identify any individual who inappropriately touched them. More specifically some victims positively identified individuals in a photo lineup as involved in the assault that were not at Sunsplash on the day of the incident. It should also be noted that all arrested suspects were of East Indian descent, approximately the same age and all have beards that were very similar. In sum, none of the suspects arrested were ever identified as the person who committed the assault. Accordingly, our office has declined to file charges against Mr. Singh based on the insufficiency of the evidence.
It is the responsibility of the District Attorney’s Office to not only prosecute the guilty, but to protect the innocent and ensure that the rights of the accused are protected. This case illustrates the importance of our ethical duty and why it is imperative that cases are properly investigated prior to forming superficial conclusions as to ones guilt. I would like to commend the detectives from the Roseville Police Department for conducting a thorough investigation that provided us with the evidence that serves as the basis for the decision in this case.