ST. GEORGE — From flooding to a kidnapping-bank robbery, believing for a teenager named Britton, plane crashes to hate crimes in Short Creek, 2014 was rife with events that captivated, challenged and brought heartbreak to St. George News readers.
Below are the topics that received the most reads in a body of work on those subjects.
Moapa washout — Portions of Interstate 15 are washed out by heavy rains, impacting route to Las Vegas. Homes and roads threatened by heavy rains and flooding.
- Rains wash out parts of Interstate 15, Nevada
- News LIVE: Post storm cleanup begins; Updated at 2:35 p.m.
- Highway Patrol clarifies alternate routes between Las Vegas, Southern Utah; updates, restrictions
- News LIVE: Valley of Fire alternate routes to, from Las Vegas; update 9:40 p.m.
Zion’s Bank robbery and hostage situation — Armed man attempts to rob Zion’s Bank, takes hostages and is fatally shot by police. Suspect’s sister gives St. George News an exclusive interview.
- News LIVE: Suspect in Zions Bank robbery confirmed dead; updated 5:12 p.m.
- Zions Bank robbery suspect fatally shot named; sister gives exclusive interview
- Bank robbery, kidnapping ends in fatal shooting; STGnews Videocast
- Washington City woman arrested for role in fatal Zions Bank robbery
Range war between Cliven Bundy and the BLM — A standoff ensues between Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and the Bureau of Land Management over grazing and public lands. After a large-scale turnout of Bundy supporters, civilian militia and BLM agents, Bundy and company are able to force a release of impounded “trespassing” cattle.
- Range war: BLM withdraws from Clark County, cattle released after standoff; Photo gallery
- Range war: BLM agents, protesters clash, rancher’s son hit with stun gun
- Range war: Rancher’s son arrested by BLM, later released; transport of impound cattle put on hold
- Range war: County resolves to solve wild horse problem if BLM prioritizes Bundy cattle
- Bundy calls on sheriffs to disarm federal agencies; STGnews Videocast
The thunder rolls — Tropical storm Norbert has city workers checking storm drains and using sandbags in preparation for flash floods. Flooding hits Southern Utah, and photos pour in from several areas.
- News LIVE: Northbound I-15 through gorge open; Updated 11 p.m.
- Southern Utah flooding; STGnews Photo Gallery
“Footloose” revisited — Police halt all dancing at a Monster Mash party at Fiesta Fun Center because of a disputed event permit, which police say did not include the right to dance. The dispute garners national attention, even being mentioned during a satirical segment on “Saturday Night Live.” Protesters take to City Hall to fight for their right to dance.
- Dancing at Monster Mash party stopped by police over disputed event permit
- Saturday Night Live, satirists poke fun at city over dancing policy
- Protesters fight for their right to dance; STGnews Videocast
- Crashed Monster Mash dance: Promoter decries, city stands by permit process
Believe for Britton — A 16-year-old boy lies in a coma following an ATV crash during a Sadie Hawkins date. The community rallies behind Britton Shipp, raising funds and showing unwavering support for the Snow Canyon football player as he remains on life support.
- 2 teens on Sadie Hawkins date taken to hospital after ATV crash
- 16-year-old boy in coma after ATV crash during Sadie Hawkins date
- Believe for Britton: Fundraisers planned for Snow Canyon teen in coma; prayer vigil held
- Believe4Britton: Community continues to rally, raising over $20,000
- Community keeps believing for Britton; $18K raised in one night
I-15 Standoff north of Cedar City — Portions of Interstate 15 are closed during a standoff between police and a man threatening to use high-powered guns.
Baby left in hot vehicle — A baby dies after being left inside a vehicle in high temperatures. An investigation ensues.
- Baby dies after being left inside vehicle in high temperatures
- Perspectives: When a child dies in a hot vehicle, a word to the infallible
- County attorney reviews case as initial investigation concludes in death of baby left in hot car
Toddler backed over by truck — A 3-year-old child dies after being backed over by a family vehicle. The community responds with love and support for the family.
- UPDATE: 3-year-old dies after being backed over by family vehicle
- Pink hug for Petersen family; community reaches out to family of 3-year-old backed over by truck
Plane crash in Santa Clara — An airplane crashes near Santa Clara, killing two people.
- Two killed in plane crash near Santa Clara
- Plane crash victims identified
- NTSB releases preliminary report on Santa Clara plane crash
Boy Scouts fell tree resulting in fatality — Motorcyclist dies after crashing into a tree felled by Boy Scouts.
- Motorcyclist dies after crashing into felled tree
- Letter to the Editor: Motorcyclist dies by tree felled by Boy Scouts; ‘my’ perspective
Five teens involved in rollover — Five teenagers are injured during a high-speed rollover on Valley View Drive in St. George. The driver later dies as a result of the crash.
- UPDATED: 5 kids injured in high speed rollover on Valley View, 1Life Flighted with life-threatening injuries
- 15-year-old girl succumbs to injuries after fatal rollover involving 5 teens
Plane crash in Virgin River Gorge — Airplane flying from Bountiful crashes in the Virgin River Gorge. Bodies are later recovered and a report is released.
- News LIVE: Plane crashes in Virgin River Gorge, 2 fatalities; last update 12:12 AM, photos added
- Plane flying from Bountiful crashes in Gorge; bodies recovered, identified
- NTSB releases report on Virgin River Gorge plane crash
Flood-related accidents — Flooding causes multiple car accidents, structure failures in August.
- News LIVE: Heavy rains cause flooding, structure failures, multiple car accidents; UPDATED 11 PM, STGnews Photo Gallery
Mysterious booms heard in Southern Utah — Southern Utahns experience mysterious “booms,” possibly due to airplanes and training exercises at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada.
- Southern Utah experiences boom, boom, booms
- What’s shaking the house? Earthquake information specialist weighs in on boom
Discrimination in Short Creek — Alleged discrimination in the border towns of Colorado City, Arizona, and Hildale escalates to hate crime status as the Department of Justice and FBI investigate.
- Short Creek discrimination escalates to hate crime status; FBI, DOJ investigating
- Polygamy police state in Colorado City, Hildale: When dialing 911 brings trouble
Columnists on passwords and what lies ahead – Other than a column relating to the Bundy range war, the top two columns of 2014 including advice from columnist Geoff Steurer about a husband who wouldn’t give his wife a password and prognistications by columnist Ed Kociela.
- Relationship Connection: Should I care if my husband won’t give me his phone password?
- On the EDge: You ain’t seen nothin’ yet
Firsts – During the 2014 election season, St. George News held its first live-streamed televised debate in the race for Republican Primary nomination for Washington County Attorney between incumbent Brock Belnap and challenger Nate Caplin.
Launch of the “No Filter Show” – Adding a bit of comedic whimsy to its offerings, St. George News launches the “No Filter Show” with co-hosts Paul Ford and Grady Sinclair featuring things historic and current in the Dixie region as well as business spotlights. As its fan base grows, the three most watched episodes included a visit to the would-be compound of now imprisoned polygamist prophet Warren Jeffs, a redwood tree that grows in Dixie, and man-on-the street queries to find out if the ladies in Southern Utah do or don’t like beards.
- No Filter: Behind the walls of Warren Jeffs’ would-be compound
- No Filter: Where the Redwood grows in Dixie
- No Filter: Do girls like beards?
Prep sports – In Spring 2014 Desert Hills was the odds-on favorite to win the state baseball championship, and got got upset by Grantsville. Desert Hills girls dominated for a championship in basketball. And Haley Bodnar, Blair Bliss and five other seniors helped Desert Hills dominate 3A girls basketball, winning the state championship with a 25-1 record. These are but a few of the many remarkable moments captured by our sports reporters and photographers.
- Desert Hills wins state 3A girls basketball title; STGNews VideoCast and photo gallery
- Grantsville rains on Thunder’s parade as Cowboys take baseball title; STGNews video highlights
- Unstoppable Desert Hills finally grabs elusive girls state championship
It’s about you – St. George News thanks our readers one and all, for your support and many contributions of ideas, news tips and photos that help us bring what’s happening in Southern Utah to you day in and day out every day of the year. Bring it on 2015.
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