As hundreds of people gathered on the San Clemente Pier Wednesday night to honor and remember a 27-year-old woman found dead under suspicious circumstances over the weekend in Laguna Beach, police announced the arrest of a 26-year-old man in connection with the case.
Tatum Goodwin’s body, which showed signs of trauma consistent with homicide, according to police, was discovered on Nov. 12 around 8:20 a.m. by a construction worker who called the Laguna Beach Police Department.
The discovery was made in an alleyway near the 200 block of Ocean Avenue, behind Carmelita’s restaurant where she had worked as an assistant manager for four years.
Laguna Hills resident Dino Rojas-Moreno was identified as a suspect in Goodwin’s death and was arrested on Nov. 15 with the assistance of the Newport Beach and Anaheim police departments, an LBPD news release stated.
Full of love and life is how friends and family are remembering the young woman.
“She was just a happy-go-lucky person that would give you the shirt off her back,” the 27-year-old’s mother, Stacy Goodwin-Pitino said. “That’s who Tatum was.”
The victim’s sister, Kaylee Goodwin, said her sister left a positive mark on those she interacted with.
“Her light shined so bright that it impacted so many different people,” she said.
Friends told KTLA’s John Fenoglio that Goodwin left work Saturday night and joined them at nearby Hennessey’s Tavern and later at the Marine Room, both bars located just steps from the beach.
The brutal crime has shocked the small, trendy coastal community known for its beachfront boutiques, restaurants and bars.
Detectives said that they believe the homicide was an isolated incident and that there is no further threat to the community. Authorities did not, however, provide a motive for the killing or say whether Rojas-Moreno and Goodwin knew each other.
The suspect is being held on $1 million bail.
As the investigation continues, authorities are asking anyone with information about the incident to contact Laguna Beach Det. Tanner Flagstad at 949-497-0369 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anonymous tips can be sent to Orange County Crime Stoppers at 1-855-TIP-OCCS.