A Laguna Beach man arrested in the death of 27-year-old Tatum Goodwin used a fire extinguisher to kill her, prosecutors alleged in a new court filing on Friday.
The body of Goodwin, who lived in San Clemente, was discovered on Nov. 12 by a construction worker in an alleyway off the 200 block of Ocean Avenue, near Carmelita’s restaurant where she worked.
“Her body was under a chain link fence on a construction site and a sandbag had been placed on her head,” prosecutors revealed.
Dino Rojas-Moreno, 26, of Laguna Hills was arrested on Wednesday and charged with Goodwin’s slaying. He worked as a bartender at Laguna Beach’s Royal Hawaiian Fire Grill, according to the Orange County Register.
In Friday’s filing, the Orange County D.A.’s Office said Rojas-Moreno first approached Goodwin in a parking lot around 1 a.m. on Nov. 12 and assaulted her near her parked car.
“Rojas-Moreno then forcefully dragged her to the rear of the parking lot, down a short alley, and to a secluded area behind a movie theatre that was under construction,” prosecutors said. That is where he allegedly beat her to death with a fire extinguisher.
Rojas-Moreno failed to show up for work later that day and claimed, according to prosecutors, that he had been “jumped” by two men in Santa Ana.
Authorities still aren’t sure if Rojas-Moreno and Goodwin knew each other.
He is being held without bond.
“The loss of an innocent life is a travesty for the entire community,” said D.A. Todd Spitzer. “It is heartbreaking that a young woman with her entire future ahead of her had her life ended in such a brutal way and then discarded like her life never mattered (sp). She mattered, and the Orange County District Attorney’s Office is committed to ensuring justice is served.”
Goodwin’s friends, family and community members gathered at the San Clemente Pier Wednesday night for a candlelight vigil to remember the young woman who was described as an “angel” by friends and co-workers.
“She was just a happy-go-lucky person that would give you the shirt off her back,” her mother, Stacy Goodwin-Pitino said. “That’s who Tatum was.”