The man shot to death Monday afternoon after confronting a driver at a Colorado Springs car wash was Nick Anderson, a hard-working tattoo artist and father of four, friends said.
Anderson, 31, had a woman and child in his black Audi when he confronted another driver at Water Works Car Wash, 525 S. Nevada Ave. He pounded on the door of that driver’s Chevrolet SUV, and when it popped open, the driver shot Anderson, witnesses said.
The shooter fled but immediately double backed, hitting an unmarked police car en route to the car wash. He surrendered to officers, who have not yet released his name.
Chris Colley said people could easily stereotype Anderson — also known as Nikko Alan — because tattoos covered his body, and his stretched earlobes were adorned with plugs.
“But once you got to know him, he was a very humble, caring and understanding individual,” Colley said. Anderson “had a big heart” and enjoyed fixing and racing cars and riding his motorcycle.
He worked at Living Art Tattoo Studio, at 570 S. Academy Blvd., a worker there confirmed.
Anderson often came to the shop before it opened and stayed after it closed, making sure he could provide for his family, Colley said.
His clients “fell in love with him more than his art.”
Anderson had two sons and a daughter from a previous marriage and a 4-year-old stepdaughter, Thalia, he said. He married Azure in May, and she is 10 weeks pregnant, Colley said.
“He would make you want to be a better person yourself. Nikko, the kind of person he was, you wanted to be like him,” he said. “He was an inspiration.”
Robyn Colley, who said she is a close friend of Anderson and his wife, said Anderson was like “a fun uncle” to her children.
“It’s like you’re getting tattooed by a friend even if it’s the first time you’re meeting him,” said Robyn Colley, who got a half-sleeve from Anderson.
A fundraiser for the family — at gofundme.com/f/support-for-the-family-of-nikko-alan — had raised $1,805 of the $5,000 goal as of Tuesday night.
Anderson’s slaying marked the 18th homicide in Colorado Springs this year. The city had 26 homicides at this time last year.
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