Credit: Big Tex - Allison Griffin, of Dallas / Tornado - Pat Humphrey/contributor / Mosquito - Tom Ervin/Getty Images / Josh Brent - Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Credit: Big Tex – Allison Griffin of Dallas — Tornado – Pat Humphrey/contributor
Mosquito – Tom Ervin/Getty Images — Josh Brent – Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Reviewing the biggest news stories in DFW from 2012.

  • West Nile Virus Epidemic – According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, the West Nile Virus killed over 80 people in 2012. Twenty-eight deaths were reported in Dallas and Tarrant counties. The most common way to catch West Nile Virus is from the bite of an infected mosquito. North Texas communities attacked the epidemic by spraying insecticides both on the ground and – in some cases – from specially equipped air planes.
  • Tornado Outbreak – April 3 – Multiple tornadoes threw tractor-trailers in the air, damaged both a Forney elementary school and high school, leveled houses and shut down airline traffic out of Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport as one of the worst storms in years hit North Texas on April 3.
  • Big Tex Burns – October 19 – Those attending the State Fair of Texas on October 19 got more than they bargained for as the iconic character Big Tex went up in flames. The fire happened at about 10:30 a.m. as the Fair was kicking off its final weekend of the year.
  • Dallas Cowboys Josh Brent Arrested for Intoxication Manslaughter – December 8 – Dallas Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent was arrested and charged with intoxication manslaughter on December 8 after a late night crash that resulted in the death of his teammate and close friend, Jerry Brown.
  • Ted Cruz New U.S. Senator from Texas – November 6 – Republican Ted Cruz was elected to the U.S. Senate on November 6 over Democratic challenger Paul Sadler. The ex-state solicitor general was heavily favored since Texas had not elected a Democrat to the U.S. Senate since Lloyd Bentsen in 1988. He succeeded retiring Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison.
  • Komen vs. Planned Parenthood – January 31 – The nation’s leading breast-cancer charity, Dallas-based Susan G. Komen for the Cure, halted its partnerships with Planned Parenthood affiliates in January — creating a bitter rift, linked to the abortion debate, between two iconic organizations.
  • TCU Students Arrested In Campus Drug Bust – February 15 – A six-month drug investigation at TCU led to the arrest of 15 students. Four of those arrested were football players, including Tanner Brock, a linebacker who led the team in tackles during the Horned Frogs’ 2010 run to the Rose Bowl.
  • AMR Bankruptcy – In a saga that included strike threats, layoffs, employment contract negotiations and merger talks, the parent company of American Airlines, AMR continued it’s extended reorganization plan that it began in November of 2011.
  • DART shooting – January 18 – A DART police officer and two DART passengers were shot January 18 when a passenger opened fire on the officer after being confronted about a boarding pass. One passenger died later from his injuries.
  • Josh Hamilton Leaves Rangers – Josh Hamilton signed a five-year, $125 million contract with the rival Los Angeles Angels in the off-season. Hamilton’s $25 million average salary matches Philadelphia first baseman Ryan Howard for the second-highest in baseball.
  • Inmate Escapes Custody at Parkland Hospital – December 4 – Dallas County Sheriff’s deputies took an inmate, who stole a deputy’s gun and escaped from Parkland Hospital, back into custody on December 4. The standoff between law enforcement and Franklin Davis, 30, lasted a little more than an hour in a Dallas parking lot, near Reagan and Harry Hines.