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Other Murder Victim Was Waiter, Friend of Nicole Simpson With AM-Simpson-Slayings, Bjt;

June 15, 1994 GMT

Other Murder Victim Was Waiter, Friend of Nicole Simpson With AM-Simpson-Slayings, Bjt; AM-Simpson-Chronology

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ When O.J. Simpson’s ex-wife left her glasses at a trendy, upscale restaurant, it wasn’t surprising that waiter Ronald Goldman volunteered to return them to her.

The two were friends and gym partners, and Nicole Brown Simpson was also a regular customer who lived just a few blocks from the restaurant.

Hours after Goldman left the restaurant with Ms. Simpson’s glasses on Sunday night, the two were found stabbed to death at her condominium. Police have questioned Ms. Simpson’s ex-husband but no arrests have been made.

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Some who worked with Goldman insisted there was no romantic relationship between him and Ms. Simpson.

″It was the wrong place at the wrong time,″ Jay Ploussard, who worked with Goldman at Mezzaluna said of his fellow waiter’s death.

But Ms. Simpson’s neighbors said they had seen Goldman with her or playing with her children on several occasions.

At Mezzaluna, a cozy eatery with tiled floors and clouds painted on the ceiling, the mood was grim Tuesday.

Alexandra De Furio, a 24-year-old waitress who lived in the same apartment building as Goldman, said she often talked to him while they did their laundry.

″He was really sweet. He would sometimes borrow my vacuum cleaner and when my cat got out he would keep her in his apartment for me,″ she said.

De Furio said she had never seen Ms. Simpson at the apartment building.

Goldman was athletic and worked out regularly. He and Ms. Simpson went to the same gymnasium, called The Gym.

On Sunday night, Ms. Simpson and nine others, had dinner at the restaurant. O.J. Simpson, who had gone to a music recital with his ex-wife earlier in the day, was not with them.

Shortly after the dinner, somebody from Ms. Simpson’s family called the restaurant to say she had left behind her prescription glasses and that Ms. Simpson would pick them up, waiter Stewart Tanner said. But Goldman volunteered to return them and left the restaurant at about 9:45 p.m.

John DeBello, the manager, said he disapproved.

″I told him he shouldn’t go,″ DeBello said. ″With someone of that caliber, it doesn’t look good.″