Trial begins for Oceanside man accused of killing live-in girlfriend

VISTA - Opening statements are scheduled Tuesday for a 25-year-old man accused of killing his girlfriend and stashing her body underneath a bed at their Oceanside home more than one year ago.

Arturo Salazar is accused of murdering 21-year-old Edith Garcia, his live-in girlfriend and the mother of their two young children.

On June 13, 2013, police found Garcia’s body after responding to the couple’s residence in the 300 block of Leeward Court on a welfare check at the request of family members who had been unable to contact her.

Salazar answered the door and said he did not know Garcia’s whereabouts, Oceanside police said. The officers then searched the premises and found Garcia's body hidden from view in an area being used as a makeshift bedroom, the sergeant said.

The two had been living in a one-car garage that had been converted into a studio in the home. Thirteen others were renting various rooms in the home. One resident told 10News he heard screams the night Garcia disappeared.

Detectives questioned Salazar, who eventually told them he had killed Garcia during an argument on Wednesday, Oceanside police alleged last year.

Prosecutors said Salazar slit Garcia's throat during an altercation. According to Oceanside police, the two had a history of domestic violence.

Garcia later pled not guilty to murder charges.

Authorities turned over the couple's children to the custody of their grandparents.

Salazar faces 26 years to life in prison if convicted of murder with use of a knife.

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