U.S. Open Referee Headed To L.A. To Face Murder Charges
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The U.S. Open referee accused of killing her 80-year-old husband in California is headed back to Los Angeles to face murder charges.
Lois Goodman, still wearing her navy-blue U.S. Open uniform, was escorted from a Manhattan courthouse Thursday by detectives with the Los Angeles Police Department.
WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell reports
The 70-year-old was in New York City to serve as a line judge at next week’s U.S. Open when she was arrested Tuesday. Following her arrest, she agreed not to fight extradition back to California.
The LAPD said Goodman’s husband, Alan Goodman, was found dead at the couple’s Woodland Hills home on April 17.
She told police it appeared her husband’s death was an accident, saying he died while she was refereeing a tennis match, according to the LAPD.
Investigators said she told them he fell down the stairs and suffered a heart attack. But investigators said they found multiple sharp force injuries on Alan Goodman’s body that didn’t match up with Lois Goodman’s story.
“The story of him falling down the stairs, although it may have occurred, it didn’t fit the evidence at scene,” said the LAPD’s Dave Storaker.
After further investigation, prosecutors said Goodman bludgeoned her husband to death with a coffee mug.
From the very moment of her husband’s death the focus of suspicion has been on his wife of nearly 50 years. Newly obtained court papers illustrate why:
There was evidence of possible marital strife. A search warrant said the LAPD “discovered and recovered two printed e-mails and a handwritten note addressed to Lois Goodman.” It also said “Lois was communicating with a male individual” and “the content of the e-mail suggests that Lois was terminating a relationship and that alternate sleeping arrangements should be made.”
She was expected to be flown to Los Angeles later Thursday and is scheduled to be arraigned Monday.
“If you are an innocent person and you want to defend yourself you’d be anxious to go back to California as soon as you could to start the proceedings there,” her New York lawyer, Guy Oksenhendler, told CBS 2’s Tony Aiello. “I think she’s concerned. She has very good support from her family, which is terrific.”
Oksenhendler questioned authorities’ decision to have her arrested in New York, suggesting it was a tactic to get headlines on two coasts.
“My concern is that their actions may prejudice her defense in California,” he said.
The LAPD has said Goodman was poised to be in New York for several weeks and police wanted to move swiftly to arrest a murder suspect.
Goodman could face life in prison if convicted.
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