Friends and family members gathered at a Laguna Niguel home Saturday evening for an emotional vigil in honor of a 22-year-old man who was fatally stabbed outside a nearby pub.
“He was a lovely boy,” a grief-stricken Shahzad Mazroei said of her late son, who was a student at Saddleback College in Mission Viejo. “He told me, ‘Mom, don’t worry, I’m working so hard.'”
Shayan Mazroei died at a hospital after being stabbed early Monday morning during an altercation near Patsy’s Irish Pub, where he often went to play pool.
A SWAT team arrested a known gang member, 37-year-old Craig Tanber, Friday morning at a Motel 6 in Westminster, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. Facing a murder charge in the case, he was being held on $1 million bail.
At Mazroei’s parents’ house Saturday, family friend Leyla Mirfakhraei remembered him as “someone who’s very social.”
“He would connect with people, like any age,” she said. “He would come to gatherings. He could get connected with a 10-year-old. He would get connected with an 80-year-old person.”
“We just want our Shayan back,” she added tearfully.
Mirfakhraei and other mourners wore black T-shirts with a photo of Mazroei on the front and the words "JUSTICE FOR SHAYAN" on the back.
"This wasn't supposed to happen. It was a racist act," said Mazroei's girlfriend, Madilyn Legaard. "This isn't the type of thing that should happen to a 22-year-old kid."
Tanber was scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.
Anyone with information about the altercation was asked to call the Sheriff’s Department’s Homicide Unit at at 714-647-7055 or 714-647-7000. Anonymous tips could be submitted to Orange County Crime Stoppers at 855-847-6227 or at occrimestoppers.org.