On December 30, 2017, I traced Anne Dunlap's steps on her last living day, twenty-two years later. Since the 2017 calendar was exactly the same as the 1995 calendar, I thought that being in those key areas at the same time of day might spark an idea that I never thought of. I could always imagine the events that took place or draw the steps out on a map. However, on this day, parallel to that December day back in 1995, I wanted to experience the same physical space where Anne may or may not have spent her last moments as well as show some of the key areas in the case. I visited the Kmart on Lake Street, the Mall of America (MOA), and the Barber's neighborhood. I captured the drive from the Barber's residence to a convenience store and a liquor store both off Hwy. 101 and 55 (site where the infamous $169 bottle of water was purchased), and lastly drove through the Dunlap's neighborhood, had their dream house construction come to fruition. With my trusty 16 GB iPhone in hand, I recorded these experiences. (Note to self...and anyone reading this: a 16 GB iPhone is worthless. Get more memory). Part one is about Kmart.
Times have changed in 22 years, but other things are very much the same. Sunrise and sunset were exactly the same, 7:50 a.m. and 4:40 p.m., respectively. Minneapolis unemployment rates are somewhat similar at 3.8% in December 1995 compared to 3.1% in December 2017. Crime rates were very similar for the Barber's neighborhood in 1995 and 2017. Crime rates were also similar for Kmart's neighborhood in 1995 and 2017, however rape, robbery, and aggravated assaults were a bit higher in 2017 than they were in 1995 (minneapolis.gov). Both 1995 and 2017 settings were a panorama of white, everywhere white. If you've never been to the Kmart on Lake Street, it is smack dab right in the middle of the main street of the city. The adjacent Super Valu has been closed for a couple years now (2015). When I went there on December 30, 2017 (5 days after Christmas), less than 1/4 of the parking lot was full. Just a large flat, empty canvas in the middle of everything else. I don't think that Anne could have been abducted here at this time of day without anyone seeing anything. This definitely is not the crime scene, this white landscape would no doubt be marked with red.
🎥* Video Link**CLICK** Showing the view from where Anne's abandoned car was parked and a camera (not there in 1995).
Although I made it a point to follow time and place as closely as I could, there were some differences. The weather was vastly different in terms of temperature. In 1995, the temperature was steadily around 32 degrees, winds 6 mph, from 2:30 to around 6:00 p.m. In 2017, the temperature swung 40 degrees colder in 2017 at -8 degrees with 12 mph winds. In 1995, there were light snow flurries, and visibility was 3 miles. In 2017, no snow, and visibility was 10 miles. In 1995, the moon rose at 12:51 p.m., set at 1:56 a.m., and 69% of the moon was illuminated. In 2017, the moon rose at 2:52 p.m., set at 4:41 a.m., and 92% of the moon was illuminated. Not any major differences, besides the year, and I suppose the people. There are many more immigrants here now, than there were in 1995. Not that that would make a difference, but it was just an observation I made when I went into the Kmart on Lake Street.
Reports back in 1995 stated that bloodhounds tracked Anne's scent to the back of Kmart. When I had first read that, I thought they meant, "around back," and outside. Other reports seemed to clarify her scent was indeed followed inside the store. Since I don't believe that Anne was shopping there, I hypothesized that her scent was in the store because her perpetrator went through the store to, "clean up" in the restroom. Seeing what was in the back of the store was the main reason I wanted to go in. Although a lot may have changed in 22 years, I doubt they would move the plumbing just to relocate the bathrooms. If the bathrooms were not in the back of the store, my theory would be wrong. The bathrooms were straight back in the back of the store, along with a camera (now, why not then??). I wonder if there was at least one camera inside the store at the entrance/exit perhaps. If so, I wonder if the recordings are still in evidence to review again. If Anne's scent was in the store, someone brought it in there, right?