Tucson, Ariz., has regained a semblance of normalcy four months after the crime that drew worldwide attention. Last week, it was business as usual at the Safeway supermarket where Jared Lee Loughner was arrested on Jan. 8 after shooting 19 people killing six and leaving Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords severely injured. A pair of tables set up for a used-book sale in the exact spot where the assault took place was piled high with titles like Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, Dan Quayle’s memoir Standing Firm and, eerily, a novel called The Murderer Next Door, by Rafael Yglesias. A couple of miles away at Pima Community College, the school Loughner was expelled from last fall, clusters of students ate lunch on a patio and others smoked cigarettes in the parking lot. One pair took a between-class nap.
Even at the Loughner home on nearby North Soledad Avenue, where his parents have rarely been seen outside their house since January, his father Randy stepped out into the Arizona sunshine. As the wind rustled through the mesquite tree out front, Randy walked across his roof wearing a sleeveless shirt, shorts and work boots and doing what appeared to be work on the house.