HOLLYWOOD, CA — On September 8, 1995, a Hollywood date night turned deadly for Michael Nigg, as the 26-year-old aspiring actor named was murdered during what appeared to be a botched robbery attempt.
Adding a chilling element to the tragedy was the fact that Nigg had been a friend of Ronald Goldman, and worked with him at Mezzaluna restaurant before the fateful evening in 1994 when Goldman got knifed to death in a Brentwood driveway alongside Nicole Brown Simpson.
In the final moments of his life, Nigg drove into a parking lot and, while his girlfriend waited in the car, withdrew $40 from an ATM.
Two men approached up-and-coming performer, whose credits included the syndicated show “Liars.” The strangers asked for his cash. When Nigg refused, one of the men shot him in the head and then they both drove off.
As the entire country sat enraptured by the O.J. Simpson trial at the time, Nigg’s case attracted widespread media coverage due to the victim’s connection to Ronald Goldman. Nigg died just as the closing arguments in the trial had begun.
Detectives announced that they were looking for three men: the two who attacked Nigg and a third, who apparently acted as their driver.
In Nigg’s memory, his many friends, including actor Mickey Rourke, held a candlelight vigil and pleaded with the public to give the police any information they had.
The cops eventually picked up a trio of suspects, but had to cut them loose due to to a lack of evidence.
During the Simpson trial, O.J. supposedly claimed that Nicole and Ronald could have possibly been killed by drug traffickers — and that several waiters at Mezzaluna, including Nigg, may have been involved in the drug trade.
Whatever the truth is regarding the restaurant’s drug connection, it remains unknown. Other Mezzaluna waiters fell victim to foul play, including two who disappeared. The Brentwood establishment closed in 1997. To date, the case Michael Nigg’s murder is still open.
Main photo: Michael Nigg [Wikipedia]