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Wednesday, Jul 26th

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Alleged rapist released from jail

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Official: DEADLINE not met

The case against a Gallup man charged with criminal sexual penetration in the second degree was dismissed May 5 due to a city police detective not submitting a rape test to the state by a prescribed deadline, court documents show.

Major Singh, 47, of Bakersville, Calif., and working in Gallup as a cook at the Bombay Restaurant and Buffet, 3404 W. Historic Highway 66, was released from the McKinley County Adult Detention Center on May 5 after the deadline mishap.

The deadline matter was disputed by the Gallup detective who said in court papers that the information was sent.

Eleventh District Judicial Court judge Robert Aragon gave the McKinley County District Attorney’s office the right to refile the charges at a future date. The court papers do not specify if those papers will be filed again.

Singh was taken into custody in November after Gallup police were dispatched to the EconoLodge at 3101 W. Historic Highway 66. There, Singh apparently checked-in to the hotel with a female co-worker and things got out of hand. A couple more females who were friends of Singh from the restaurant came by the hotel, before the victim called police to report a sexual assault. At least one other hotel worker was present at the hotel at the time of the apparent assault, according to police documents.

The victim said in police reports that Singh grabbed her and threw her on the hotel bed and raped her. Singh, who has Indian roots, was initially jailed on $100,000 bond, but that amount was decreased to $10,000 after an arraignment.

McKinley County Deputy District Attorney Earl Rhoads said in court papers that the state’s case was going to rely on DNA evidence should the case go to trial. Rhoads said in written correspondence that he sent two emails to Gallup police Det. Stephen Collins in early April asking if a rape kit was sent to the state lab. Collins replied that a rape kit was sent to the state on April 28. Singh’s jury trial was set to start May 5.

“The state does not believe that this is acceptable behavior in a case where the defendant has been in custody since the date of his arrest,” Rhoads wrote in court papers.

There were no restrictions placed on Singh’s release. Singh possesses a prior jail record in Texas.

By Bernie Dotson 
Sun Correspondent