875- The killer is arrested
Graig Tanber killed our dear Shayan only for his skin color - what a bullshit reason to take a life- shame on these behaviors and opinions
LAGUNA NIGUEL – Three years ago, Jonathan Way met Shayan Mazroei when the two both found themselves in front of the chalkboard at Patsy’s Irish Pub, waiting to sign up to shoot pool.
Mazroei introduced himself, and the two became fast friends. That was just how Mazroei was, Way said, always the first person at the bar to introduce himself and welcome newcomers to the local watering hole.
Early Monday morning, Mazroei was lying in front of that chalkboard, fighting for his life after being stabbed outside Patsy’s. The 22-year-old operator of a Santa Ana car dealership died after reaching Mission Hospital, and the incident has left friends and loved ones looking for ways to pay tribute to a person they say had a bright future.
“We’re all just in shock,” Way said. “He was one of my closest friends, and I can’t imagine something like this happening to someone who was always happy, always smiling.”
Orange County Sheriff’s deputies say Craig Tanber, a 37-year-old Dana Point man, killed Mazroei. After being at large for several days, Tanber was arrested on suspicion of murder Friday at a Westminster hotel and booked into Orange County jail.
Tanber is an admitted white supremacist who previously served time for voluntary manslaughter, though authorities say they don’t believe the Labor Day attack was a hate crime. He was held in lieu of $1 million bail and is expected to make a court appearance Tuesday.
Mazroei moved from Oklahoma to Laguna Niguel in August 2013, and not long after, he developed a passion for playing pool at Patsy’s. In doing so, he became part of the “Cheers”-like community there.
The Patsy’s crowd is mostly middle-aged, but that never seemed to bother Mazroei, said local and bar regular Stefanie McCleary.
“He chose to spend his time mostly with us versus with his peers, and I think that says a lot about the kind of mature person he was,” McCleary said.
McCleary and their group of about 15 close friends were planning a remembrance for Mazroei at Patsy’s this weekend. At the private event, she said the group will play pool and share their favorite memories of Mazroei.
For George Hansle, returning to Patsy’s will be difficult. Hansle was shooting pool with Mazroei the night of the incident, and after the stabbing, he performed CPR on his friend next to the pool table until the Orange County Sheriff’s Department arrived.
“We were sitting there, talking about his girlfriend, how he’d been hanging out with his father, about his mom being in Iran, then shortly thereafter, the poor kid’s dead,” Hansle said. “We had just been smiling and laughing like we normally do, and then he was taken from us.”
Mazroei’s choice in friends came as no surprise to his girlfriend, Mandilyn Legaard. He was wise beyond his years, she said, and could make friends with anyone.
“The thing I love most about him is he was such an old soul,” Legaard said. “He was so wise, and I feel like I’ve learned so much from him even though he’s two years younger than me.”
Mazroei’s maturity also made him a good businessman, Legaard said. He opened Auto Gallery LLC, a car dealership in Santa Ana, five months ago, and the business was just starting to take off.
Legaard, who still lives in Oklahoma, last saw Mazroei two weeks ago when she came to California to celebrate their four-year anniversary. The two had talked previously about wanting to spend time in Malibu, so the night before Legaard was set to fly back, they headed to the beachside city for dinner at V’s, a posh restaurant on Pacific Coast Highway.
“He wanted to go all-out because it was my last night,” Legaard said. “We ordered nice local wine and everything on the menu we wanted. We couldn’t decide on dessert, so he ordered both the desserts we wanted.
“We had the best dinner ever.”