California bartender charged with murder for beating young woman to death with a fire extinguisher

LAGUNA BEACH, CA - A 26-year-old bartender from Laguna Hills, California, has been charged in the murder of a 27-year-old woman, Tatum Goodwin, whose body was found Sunday at about 8:20 a.m. by a construction worker in the 100 block of S. Coast Highway in the beach community, ABC News reported.

Goodwin had been beaten to death with a fire extinguisher, and her body left for dead at a construction site with a sandbag over her head, law enforcement officials said. 

Dino Rojas-Moreno was arrested after Goodwin’s body was discovered. Law enforcement officials said her body was under a chain link fence at a construction site. 

“Rojas-Moreno is accused of approaching Goodwin in a nearby parking lot around 1 a.m. that morning and assaulting her near her parked car,” said a district attorney from the Orange County DA’s Office. “Rojas-Moreno then forcefully dragged her to the rear parking lot, down a short alley, and to a secluded area that was under construction. Rojas-Moreno is then accused of beating Goodwin to death with a fire extinguisher. Goodwin was found several hours later.” 

It is unknown if Rojas-Moreno and Goodwin had any prior relationship or had known each other before Sunday morning. He failed to show up to work on the day of the murder after he claimed several men in Santa Ana jumped him, police said. 

“The loss of an innocent life is a travesty for the entire community,” said Orange County District Attorney 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. She mattered, and the Orange County District Attorney’s Office is committed to ensuring justice is served.” 

Rojas-Moreno has been charged with one count of felony murder, one felony enhancement of special circumstances of committing the murder in the commission of a kidnapping, and one felony enhancement for the personal use of a weapon, in this case, the fire extinguisher, according to the DA’s office. 

He is currently held in custody without bail and was scheduled to be arraigned Monday at the Central Justice Center in Santa Ana. 

The Laguna Beach Independent said Senior Deputy District Attorney Jeff Moore of the Homicide Unit is serving as lead prosecutor in the case. 

While the investigation continues, Rojas could, if convicted, be eligible for the death penalty. 

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