It was a busy year reporting on the news of Cobb County.
The Marietta Daily Journal is counting down the top 10 stories of the year as voted on by our staff, but the list of stories that got the most views online in 2018 reflects what got the most attention from our readers.
Here’s the list of the top 40 stories that got the most views on mdjonline.com this year.
1. Warrant: Marietta man accused of using Snapchat to sell marijuana, ecstasy – Feb. 27
At the intersection of crime and social media, a Marietta man was arrested in February after police say he used Snapchat to sell drugs to an undercover officer.
2. Chief Justice Hines killed in wreck returning from granddaughter’s choir performance – Nov. 4
Harris Hines, who retired as chief justice of the Georgia Supreme Court in August, was killed in a car wreck in November while heading back to his home in Marietta from his granddaughter’s choir performance in Newnan.
3. Marietta High must forfeit 2017 wins – July 23
In July, Marietta High School’s football team was forced to forfeit all eight of its wins in the 2017 season after a Georgia High School Association investigation revealed the team used two players deemed to be ineligible due to residency rules.
4. Mixed-use development will replace Kennesaw’s Electric Cowboy – June 22
In June, Kennesaw’s City Council approved a plan from a Marietta developer to build a new mixed-use development on the site of the shopping center that hosts the Electric Cowboy nightclub, which has been open since the mid-1990s. As of December, the club was still operating, however, but city officials estimated that the shopping center would be demolished within two years.
5. No foul play suspected in Kennesaw Mountain hiker’s death – Oct. 24
Police found the remains of David Blake, a 25-year-old Marietta hiker who had been missing since March, on Kennesaw Mountain in October. A few days after finding his remains, police announced that foul play was not suspected in his death.
6. UPDATE: Kell High School teacher has one accuser, investigators have evidence: police – June 2
In June, more information was released about Spencer Herron, a former Kell High School teacher accused of sexually assaulting a student on campus. Cobb police said they found evidence at Herron’s home in Acworth that corroborates the victim’s account. Herron is scheduled for a jury trial in January.
7. What does the Braves’ playoff schedule look like? – Sept. 27
This story from September noted that although the Atlanta Braves clinched the NL East title and a trip to the playoffs, their postseason opponent was still not set. The Braves went on to lose to the L.A. Dodgers 3-1 in the NL Division Series.
8. Dozens arrested in Cobb County drug bust – Dec. 28, 2017
Cobb County arrest warrants showed dozens of people faced drug and conspiracy charges stemming from a months-long trafficking investigation by the county’s multi-agency narcotics unit.
9. No new evidence at Kennesaw Mountain Park of missing Marietta man after weeklong search – Mar. 16
Another story about David Blake, this one from March just a week after he went missing. As the headline notes, law enforcement officials did not have much information about Blake’s disappearance at that time. His remains were found in October.
10. LakePoint sports complex in Bartow files for bankruptcy to restructure debt – June 11
In July, Eight entities tied to the LakePoint Sporting Community, a 13,000-acre sports complex in Emerson just past the Cobb County border, filed for bankruptcy. State Rep. Earl Ehrhart, R-Powder Springs — the former CEO of LakePoint who resigned in February but remains a consultant for the sports complex — said the Chapter 11 filing is merely a restructuring of the complex’s debt after getting some new investors.
11. Plan puts Cobb parks on chopping block – June 4
A proposal created in January that looked to cut nearly $3.4 million from the county’s parks and recreation budget would have required several Cobb parks to shut down. The plan, which was uncovered in June, was created as part of the county’s efforts to close a projected $30 million budget shortfall, a deficit that was closed when the county raised property taxes this summer.
12. Will you live in East Cobb’s new city? Proposed boundaries unveiled – Nov. 21
A committee formed to explore the possibility of a new city of East Cobb released a map in November with proposed boundaries for the new municipality. The committee also released a study examining the feasibility of the new city in December.
13. WATCH: Video shows Cobb cyclist’s impact with pickup – Oct. 10
Footage captured by a cyclist’s camera after he crashed into a truck who passed him and then braked suddenly led to the truck driver’s arrest. The wreck took place in early October on Canton Road.
14. Future Marine killed in single-car wreck; driver charged – July 23
West Marietta’s John Carpenter, 19, was killed in a wreck in July on Georgia 400 near Interstate 285. Carpenter was just days from entering Marine Corps training.
15. Marietta cheerleading coach resigns after being placed on leave – Oct. 4
Marietta High School cheerleading coach Teisha Fooster resigned in October after being placed on administrative leave pending an internal investigation into her team’s unauthorized trip to Washington D.C. in September to cheer on the school’s football team. At issue was the fact that the trip was never formally approved by the school board.
16. UPDATE: Cobb schools clarifies plans for safety drills – Feb. 16
The Cobb School District in February announced that schools would start performing surprise lockdown drills and begin sending plain-clothes officers onto campus to see how far they could get before being questioned by teachers or administrators. After making the announcement and in response to parent concerns, district officials clarified that these officers would not be armed or “posing” as criminals.
17. Two killed in West Cobb head-on collision – July 23
Allison Carroll, 24, of Powder Springs and Ashley Bratton, 17, of Acworth were killed in a wreck on Mars Hill Road in July. The driver accused of causing the wreck, Braden Price, has been charged with four counts of homicide by vehicle and is schedule for a jury trial in January.
18. Son arrested, accused of killing father in weekend shooting – Oct. 2
Daniel Attaway, 24, is accused of shooting and killing his father, Douglas Attaway, at his father’s Marietta home in September. Daniel Attaway was denied bond at a hearing in November and was indicted on murder charges in December.
19. Construction, ‘coming soon’ signs declare European grocer’s entrance into Cobb – Aug. 8
Almost a year after reports that it was scaling back its plans to expand its footprint in Georgia, European grocery chain Lidl in August had its signature architecture and “coming soon” signs up in two Cobb locations: one on Floyd Road in Mableton and another on Powder Springs Road near the intersection of Barrett Parkway.
20. Cobb police chief defends officer who arrested 12-year-old at mall – Oct. 16
Corey Jackson, a rapper who performs under the name Lil C-Note, was arrested at Cumberland Mall in October for allegedly selling CDs after being warned not to do so twice. His aunt was also arrested after an altercation with police, which was captured on an officer’s body camera. Police Chief Mike Register defended the officer’s actions, but announced an internal investigation into the incident.
21. The “Do’s and Don’ts” of SunTrust Park – Mar. 22
Ahead of the Atlanta Braves’ 2018 home opener, the MDJ published a list of do’s and don’ts for the ballpark, located in Cobb County at the intersection of interstates 75 and 285 in Cumberland.
22. Influential Marietta Attorney John Moore has died – Nov. 6
Described by one of his peers as a “real titan in the legal industry,” Marietta attorney John Moore, founder of Marietta-based law firm Moore Ingram Johnson & Steele, died of cancer in November. He was 73.
23. WellStar surgeon sues over reassignment following military duty – Dec. 6
Dr. William Cooper, a WellStar cardiovascular surgeon who was deployed to the Middle East, returned home from military duty to find his job title had been stripped, a federal lawsuit against the Marietta-based health system alleged. A WellStar spokesperson called the claims baseless.
24. Marietta Square set to get its first brewery this summer – Feb. 9
In February, Marietta residents Hank DuPre and Sam Rambo announced they would be opening Glover Park Brewery, which opened in early September on Atlanta Road just off the Square.
25. Wilkins gets life for teen’s brutal murder – Mar. 19, 2010
This eight-year-old story about Mathew Wilkins being sentenced to life in prison for killing his girlfriend frequently trends because the case, and the reporter who covered it, appeared on an episode of the television show “Fatal Attraction,” which continues to air.
26. Cobb schools to curb student protests – Feb. 28
Cobb Schools Superintendent Chris Ragsdale announced in February that he would not permit students to leave class and participate in a nationwide protest of gun laws on March 14, which also commemorated the one-month anniversary of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Many students walked out anyway despite the threat of punishment.
27. ‘Marsy’s Law’ among 5 proposed amendments on November’s ballot – Sept. 28
This story about a proposed constitutional amendment to create a “victim’s bill of rights” was part of a series of stories in September to let readers know about the constitutional amendments, referendums and special election questions Georgians were asked on their November ballots. The proposal, also known as “Marsy’s Law,” passed with 81 percent of the vote.
28. Marietta sex trafficking ring thwarted, police say – Aug. 21
Marietta police arrested four people in August who allegedly ran a sex trafficking operation out of the Days Inn hotel off Franklin Gateway near Dave & Buster’s.
29. Tips on using new I-75, 575 managed lanes – Sept. 5
With the state’s new reversible toll lanes along I-75 and I-575 set to open on Sept. 8, the MDJ published a list of frequently asked questions about the lanes
30. Cobb schools superintendent proposing larger raises for employees – July 12
In July, Superintendent Chris Ragsdale proposed 2.6 percent across-the-board raises using additional revenue from this year’s record-high tax digest. The raises were approved a week later.
31. Marietta teen falls from moving SUV; alcohol believed to be a factor – July 6
Alyssa Prindle, 18, was riding in the back of an SUV on Johnson Ferry Road just before 2 a.m. when she rolled down the rear window and hung out of it, according to police. She then fell out the window, striking the road. She died from her injuries a few weeks later. The driver of the SUV, Abigail Cook, has been charged with three counts of homicide by vehicle. A trial is scheduled for February.
32. Warrant reveals new details in Attaway murder – Oct. 3
The arrest warrant for Daniel Attaway, accused of fatally shooting his father in late September, described the shooting as an “execution-style” murder. Attaway was denied bond at a hearing in November and was indicted on murder charges in December.
33. Investigators: Foul play not suspected in woman’s ‘odd’ disappearance – Sept. 11
Valeris Maynard of Smyrna was reported missing by her family on Sept. 5. Police found her SUV unlocked with Maynard’s purse and cellphone inside at the Pigeon Hill parking area in Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park. She was found and reported safe two weeks later.
34. Marietta Square Market brings two new eateries into the fold – May 11
The Marietta Square Market, an 18,500-square-foot warehouse reclamation project bringing food and shopping options to historic Marietta, has announced Meat in the Middle and Lucky’s Burger & Brew would be joining its roster of tenants. The food hall is expected to open in early 2019.
35. Marietta Square Skating rink canceled this winter – Oct. 30
The group in charge of the Marietta Square’s annual Winter Wonderland event told the City Council in October that its popular ice skating rink in Glover Park on the Square would not be returning this season, citing declining profits.
36. Harry’s Farmers Market in Marietta sees massive crowds on final day – Oct. 5, 2017
This story from last year recounts the last day of Harry’s Farmers Market in Marietta, which closed after nearly a quarter century in business. Crowds packed in the grocery store after the company priced every item at 50 percent off.
37. Cobb inmate escapes work detail – July 12
Christopher Shane Pruitt, in jail for violating his probation, walked off from a parks and recreation clean up detail at Fuller Park in east Cobb. He was recaptured later the same evening.
38. Police: 3 arrests made in Acworth killing – April 3
In April, Acworth police arrested three people in connection with the March shooting death of Daniel Perez, a 25-year-old father of three.
39. Fire closes Kennesaw pizza restaurant – May 30
No one was inside and no injuries were reported when Lopardo’s New York Pizza & Pasta, located at 2950 George Busbee Parkway in Kennesaw near Fifth Third Bank Stadium, caught fire in May.
40. Frequently Asked Questions About the Northwest Corridor Managed Lanes – Aug. 16
With the state’s new reversible toll lanes along I-75 and I-575 set to open in the fall, the MDJ published a list of frequently asked questions about the lanes in August. The paper published a similar list in September, closer to the lanes’ opening.