There were plenty of big news stories that caught your eye on NBCDFW.com for 2019. Whether it was a gripping murder trial, pool floaties used to protect cars from hail or a person who licked a Blue Bell ice cream container at the grocery store, North Texas was tuned in. Here are the most viewed articles of the year.
1 - Amber Guyger Trial, Sentencing
The biggest news story this year on NBCDFW.com was the Amber Guyger trial. Former officer Guyger fatally shot her neighbor Botham Jean last year at a Dallas apartment. She says she mistook his apartment for her own and believed he was there to hurt her. In September, the world watched our livestream from the courtroom as we learned more about what happened that night and more about the aftermath. She was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Oct. 1. Botham Jean’s brother Brandt Jean told Guyger from the witness stand that he forgave her and that Botham would want her to give her life to Christ. It was a moment captured in pictures and video that were shared throughout social media.
The latest news from around North Texas.
2 - Fort Worth Officer Opens Fire, Killing Woman Inside Her Home; Officer Charged
In October, a Fort Worth officer’s body camera captured the moments that led to him fatal shooting 28-year-old Atatiana Jefferson through a window at her family's home. Officer Aaron Dean was there to respond to a welfare check call. A neighbor called the department’s non-emergency number after he noticed the doors were left open and the lights were on. Jefferson was pronounced dead at the scene. It was later determined she was playing a video game with her 8-year-old nephew and she looked through the window when they heard someone outside. Dean was later charged with murder. His trial date has not yet been announced.
"There was no reason for her to be dead, because there was nothing violent going on," the neighbor James Smith said. "There was no distress at this particular property. They had no reason to come here with guns drawn."
3 - Video of Woman Licking Blue Bell Ice Cream Linked to Store in Texas
Texans were horrified when a video of a woman at a grocery store took off the lid of a Blue Bell container and licked the top before placing it back in the freezer. (Don’t mess with our Blue Bell, y’all!) The video was linked to a girl in Lufkin, according to Blue Bell. The Tin Roof flavor was pulled off the shelves and soon the teen girl was identified, but it’s unclear whether she ended up facing charges.
4 - Active Shooter Killed in Dallas in Exchange of Gunfire With Federal Officers
In June, alerts of an active shooter in Downtown Dallas rang too familiar for those near where the deadly July 7, 2016 shooting occurred. In this incident, we learned a 22-year-old man dressed in tactical gear opened fire outside of the Earle Cabell Federal Building and exchanged shots with federal officers. He died of his injuries.
"If there's one thing that this incident has taught us it's that the security system at the federal courthouse has worked to our benefit today and we are significantly grateful for that," U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox said at the time.
A video from a witness showed just how close the shooter came to a Dallas Morning News photographer who crouched behind a wall.
5 - Tornado Rips Through Dallas Area, Thousands Left Without Power
On Oct. 20, there were 10 tornadoes that touched down in North Texas, causing significant damage across the area and more than $60 million of damage in Dallas alone. The tornadoes touched down in North Dallas, Richardson, Garland, Rockwall, Rowlett, Sachse, Wylie, Midlothian, Kaufman County, Ferris and Willis Point. As of Dec. 13, FEMA gave Texas a few more weeks to request disaster relief funds for the damage. Last week, we spoke with families still affected.
6 - Witness in Guyger Trial Shot, Killed: Dallas County DA
A man who was a neighbor of Botham Jean and testified in the Amber Guyger murder trial was found dead in October from multiple gunshot wounds. Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson urged people to avoid speculation as the police department investigated.
A few days later, there was a manhunt in Louisiana for three suspects in the slaying. Two men were arrested and police believe it was a drug deal gone wrong.
7 - North Texans Pull Out All the Stops to Protect Cars From Hail
North Texans said "oh hail no!" when a hail storm moved through the area. They got creative and protected their vehicles with pool floaties, Styrofoam and blankets. Someone even used a bag of mulch!
8 - New State Laws Go Into Effect Sept. 1
Texans wanted to learn about the new state laws that went into effect Sept. 1. Some of the big ones were that businesses are required to notify customers of a data breach within 60 days, a law made it a felony to steal packages off people’s porches, craft breweries can now sell up to a case of beer per customer per day and the legal tobacco age was raised to 21. Go here to read more.
9 - North Texas Stores Raided, CBD Products Seized
In March, Duncanville police removed hundreds of pounds of CBD products from two stores, along with more than 30 pounds of what they described as marijuana, in what the stores’ owners described as a big misunderstanding. At the time, the laws on CBD and hemp were murky, but now CBD is legal in Texas. Go here to see our Investigates series on CBD.
10 - Clark Gable III, Host of 'Cheaters', Grandson of Hollywood Icon Found Dead in Dallas
Clark Gable III, the grandson of Hollywood legend Clark Gable, died in Dallas in February. His body was found by a friend inside his Dallas home, according to police.
11 - Texas High School Football Playoff Schedules, Results
We broke down all the divisions and classes for the high school football season.
12 - 8-Year-Old Kidnapped in Fort Worth Found Safe
In May, an 8-year-old girl who was walking with her mother was snatched right in front of her mother's eyes. It happened in Fort Worth's Ryan Place and a neighbor's doorbell camera captured the moment the mother was thrown from the car. She was later rescued by police from a Forest Hill hotel. In November, the perpetrator, Michael Webb, was sentenced to life in prison.
13 - Transgender Woman Whose Assault Was Captured on Video Fatally Shot
A transgender woman whose April assault in a Dallas parking lot was captured on video and went viral, was shot and killed Saturday morning, police say. The death of 23-year-old Muhlaysia Booker made national headlines. Police had flagged the assault as a possible hate crime.
14 - 3-Year-Old's School Pictures Don't Turn Out as Planned, Go Viral
In November, a 3-year-old Arkansas boy whose pre-K school pictures didn't turn out as he rehearsed has gone viral. He practiced his smile with his mom many times the night before. The result made the internet laugh and sharing their own kid's school pictures and funny smiles.
15 - Missing Dallas Boy Dead, Aunt's Boyfriend Arrested, Charged
An 18-month-old boy named Cedric Jackson was reported missing in Dallas in July. Then Dallas police arrested a 27-year-old man and charged him with felony injury to a child in connection with the boy's death. His body was found in a landfill.