Visions: Miraculous Perception

Miraculous Perception

Standing 25 ft. above Beyer Boulevard in Chula Vista, Calif., near San Diego, the blank billboard attracted no attention until some passersby claimed they saw a face in the shadows caused by the light fixtures. The face, they swore, was that of Laura Arroyo, 9, a local girl who was abducted and murdered last month. Gawkers began gathering in twos and threes, then in ever larger throngs. One evening last week, an estimated 25,000 assembled amid ice-cream and food vendors, causing a two-mile-long traffic jam. One hustling entrepreneur took over a vacant lot and charged $3 a car for parking.

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