Local News

December 30, 2012

2012: Year in review

The world did not end in 2012, as some predicted, but there were numerous people for whom the year represented lives forever changed.

The Daily Citizen news staff compiled a list of some of the top local stories of the year.

Shakeup in

Murray County

Murray County Chief Magistrate Bryant Cochran won re-election during the summer but resigned a short time later after he admitted to pre-signing — though not distributing — a handful of warrants. He was also under investigation for allegedly making sexual propositions to several women on the job. He has denied the allegations.

One of the women, through her attorney, accused Cochran of having the Murray County Sheriff’s Office participate in a scheme to plant drugs on her vehicle. The woman was arrested, but the district attorney said within a few days he would not press charges.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation was brought in to investigate, and the U.S. Department of Justice also became involved. Those investigations are ongoing, and several people have been subpoenaed to appear before a federal grand jury in Atlanta. Sheriff Howard Ensley fired two officers, saying they lied during the investigation, but he declined to go into detail.

Ensley, who has been in office for 24 years, was defeated during the November election by Gary Langford, a retired law enforcement officer.

Earlier in the year, Brittany Pittman defeated first-term incumbent Greg Hogan for sole commissioner. Hogan, a former mayor of Eton, had won a special election July 19 of last year to replace former sole commissioner David Ridley, who resigned. Pittman also sought the office then.

Late in the year, Murray native Gale Buckner, who has held numerous high-profile positions with state government, returned to the county to serve as chief magistrate judge after being appointed by the four Superior Court judges of the Conasauga Judicial Circuit.

Pittman, for one, was pleased.

“I think it (Buckner taking office) will restore a lot of the professionalism that needs to be in Murray County,” Pittman said. “I’m looking forward to working with her to make Murray County a better community.”

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Local News
  • Little library 1 mlh.jpg Little Libraries, big goal

    Whitfield County just received a new library.
    And better yet, 26 more are on the way to the region.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Picture 3.jpg Rock solid

    A great number of things have come and gone since 1974.
    One that hasn’t: a small Dalton school founded by parents wanting a unique learning environment for their children.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • Vann House Day '14 6 mlh.jpg History comes alive at Vann House

    SPRING PLACE — In the early 1800s, the 1,000-acre plantation belonging to Cherokee Indian leader James Vann was a bustling place.

    July 26, 2014 5 Photos

  • Local officials agree with Deal

    Regarding news last week that approximately 30 unaccompanied minors from Central America, who had crossed the southern border into the United States, were sent without warning to Dalton last year and enrolled in Dalton Public Schools, Republican politicians representing portions of Murray and Whitfield Counties agree — state and local school officials deserved to know in advance, they say.

    July 26, 2014

  • Former chamber location 2 mlh.jpg Plan could cut flooding, stormwater damage in Dalton

    On a recent day, McClellan Creek flowed gently through Harlan Godfrey Civitan Park. But some park goers who live near the area say that even a mild rain can turn the creek into a torrent that eats away at their property.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Civil War anniversary: The Battle of Crow Valley, May 9-12, 1864

    The Atlanta Campaign began during the first two weeks of May 1864 in and around Dalton. Union Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman’s strategy was to target two of his armies, about 80,000 men, against Confederate Gen. Joseph E. Johnston’s Army of Tennessee at Dalton. Then, while Johnston’s attention was diverted by these forces, he would secretly send his third army, about 25,000 troops under Maj. Gen. James B. McPherson, in a flanking movement to the southwest through Snake Creek Gap. Sherman’s goal was to break Johnston’s railroad supply line some 15 miles south at Resaca and trap Johnston’s Confederates in Dalton.

    July 26, 2014

  • New church being  built mlh.jpg Church construction continues

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Avans.jpg Three arrested in arson plot to claim insurance money

    Three people have been arrested for their role in a fire at a Chatsworth home as part of an insurance scam to collect money, officials said.

    July 25, 2014 3 Photos

  • Investigation into MFG chemical accident continues

    An investigation is still ongoing after a MFG Chemical employee was injured earlier this month at a plant on Kimberly Park Drive.

    July 25, 2014

  • Judge sets $100,000 bond for Cohutta man accused of incest, molestation

    A Cohutta man charged with incest, aggravated sodomy and child molestation was granted a $100,000 bond over the prosecutor’s objection on Friday.

    July 25, 2014