Goleta murder-suicide victim’s autopsy results released

Two women were found dead in a murder-suicide at a Goleta apartment complex on Tuesday, September 12.
Two women were found dead in a murder-suicide at a Goleta apartment complex on Tuesday, September 12. Noozhawk

Autopsy results for a Goleta homicide case show the suspect did not use a firearm or knife in the alleged murder of the victim, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department.

Investigators are looking into the motive and circumstances of a murder-suicide that took place Sept. 12 in a Hollister Village apartment in Goleta.

Two women were found dead when deputies arrived on the scene that morning: Christina Marie Martin, 57, of Tampa Bay, Florida, whose cause of death was homicide, and homicide suspect Beth Curnow, 42, of Goleta, who authorities say committed suicide and was found in the residence’s garage.

The Coroner’s Office conducted an autopsy on Martin’s body last week and it “revealed that Martin had been battered around the head and upper body and suffered a compression of the neck,” Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Kelly Hoover said Monday.

The death was caused by “dual modality homicidal violence resulting in multiple traumatic injuries,” the department said.

The cause of death for Curnow has not been released and the Coroner’s Office has not conducted an autopsy, according to Hoover.

Neither a firearm or knife was used in the homicide or suicide, she added.

Authorities have not released many details about the case, but the Sheriff's Department has said it was an isolated incident and there are no outstanding suspects.

The two women were “longtime acquaintances” with ties to Florida, according to the Sheriff's Department.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact the sheriff’s Criminal Investigations Division at 805-681-4150, leave an anonymous tip online or by calling 805-681-4171.

Deputies returned to the apartment complex the night of the murder-suicide after reports of shots fired in the area, but the reports turned out to be unfounded.

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The National Suicide Prevention Line is available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255 and the Santa Barbara County 24-hour, toll-free hotline is 1-800-400-1572. is a Santa Barbara-based news website. Noozhawk managing editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNewsand @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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