Yesterday was the seventh anniversary of the Bundy murders, and I noticed an interesting thing in the almanac section on the weather page of the LA Times. It gave the times of sunset at (presumably the geographical middle of) three Southern California counties: Orange (8:03), Los Angeles (8:05), and Ventura (8:09). For all practical purposes (within a few seconds) the time of sunset is the same on the same date each year for a particular location. So, we can assume that these same figures were true in 1994. Because Brentwood and LA's Westside are west of the center of the county, sunset there is about 8:07 [PM PDT] on June 12th.
I mention this because the fact helps one to visualize the lighting of various situations related to the Bundy murders. We recall the video tape of Simpson after the recital, and it was bright afternoon, but according to the length of the shadows, late. As witnesses at the Mezzaluna reported that Nicole's dinner party left the restaurant at about 8:30, and considering that twilight in these parts lasts 30 to 40 minutes near the summer solstice, we can see that when the Browns/Simpsons came out of the restaurant, the sun had set, and it was already late in the twilight period. Thus, when Juditha had that last memorable view of Nicole crossing the street with her children to go to the ice cream parlor, it was in the last glow of the day, and most of the lighting was from streetlights and shops on San Vicente. (Since Nicole was east of Juditha, there was no silhouette effect against a glowing horizon.) Ten or fifteen minutes later when Nicole and the children walked home, the twilight was over, and total night had just descended. All subsequent events were in darkness, too, except for artificial illumination.
I also see that San Vicente Blvd. points in a west-northwest direction -- almost directly at the place where the sun sets in June. So, the sidewalk and street in front of the restaurant would have been in direct sunlight until almost sunset -- until about 8:00 o'clock. Mezzaluna employees also say that the party arrived at the restaurant shortly after 6:30 (the point is disputed by a witness who was not at the restaurant, I realize). So if we believe Juditha's reconstruction of what she thinks happened to her glasses (that they fell from her possession as she alighted from the car when she arrived at the restaurant) then they lay in the sunlight in the street in front of the restaurant from about 6:30 to about 8:00, in full sunlight, while other diners, the parking attendant, and strollers on busy San Vicente passed by, and nobody noticed them.
Just a small datum for the record.
Dick Wagner Van Nuys, CA (6/13/01) NG_722
Ps: Jean (of AFOJS) replied to this to say, "Also it was a new moon on the 9th and quarter moon on the 16th so there was little moon light that night."