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Year in Review: Nazareth's Top 25 Stories from 2012

As we prepare to ring in 2013, let's take a look back at the most popular stories on Nazareth Patch from the last 365 days.

People flocked to Nazareth Patch in 2012 for stories that ranged from tragic (a Nazareth grad killed in a pedestrian accident and another shot dead in Easton) to naughty (student-teacher relations in a Wal-Mart parking lot).

Here are 25 local stories that attracted lots of attention:

1. Rachel L. Farrell, 25, allegedly had numerous sexual encounters -- which includes sex in the parking lot of the Lower Nazareth Wal-Mart -- with her students.

2. Hurricane Sandy: Nazareth Information Center
Use the article to find and share information about Hurricane Sandy's impact on the Nazareth area.

3. Stacee Banko, 32, a Nazareth Area Intermediate School teacher, is free on $10,000 unsecured bail after allegedly shoplifting from Kohl's in Lower Nazareth Township.

4. Police: Nazareth Man Set Day Care's Doors on Fire
Craig Werkheiser of 31 E. Chestnut St. is charged with institutional vandalism and related offenses; he was released on $15,000 unsecured bail.

5. N. Green Street House Fire Under Investigation
After two gas cans were discovered near the scene of a house fire at 40 N. Green St., two fire marshals and the Nazareth Borough Police Department began an investigation.

6. The assailant, who has not been arrested, is described as a white male and about 18-20 years old. He was wearing a dark-hooded jacket, and was last seen running west toward S. Green Street.

7. UPDATE: Nazareth Grad Killed in Chester County Pedestrian Accident
Joseph M. Pietroforte, a 2010 graduate of Nazareth Area High School, was struck by a vehicle and killed Monday night in West Goshen Township, Chester County.

8. Nazareth High Grad Killed in Easton Shooting
Matthew Kelly, 20, a graduate of Nazareth Area High School, died following a shooting Sunday in Easton.

9. 88-Year-Old Bethlehem Woman Killed in Lower Nazareth Crash
The Lehigh County coroner identified Gertrude M. Babin, 88, of Bethlehem as one of the two people killed in a two-car accident on Hanoverville Road in Lower Nazareth Township.

10. Anne Difrancesco, 33, of Bushkill Township, is accused of taking $102,924.65 from Star Pontiac-Buick-GMC in Lower Nazareth Township.

11. Police: Nazareth Girl Sexually Assaulted by Ex-College Police Officer
A 24-year-old former Muhlenberg College police officer is accused of sexually assaulting a 13-year-old Nazareth girl inside her home and e-mailing her sexually explicit photos.

12. Photo Contest: Is Your Dog the Top Dog?
Upload a photo of your favorite four-legged family member and your pet could vie to become the Top Dog in Eastern Pennsylvania Patch-land.

13. Michael Powers, 19, a graduate of Nazareth Area High School, was killed when his vehicle hit a building in Forks Township early Friday morning.

14. Fatal Crash on Newburg Road in Upper Nazareth Wednesday
At least one person is dead in a crash on the 3000 block of Newburg Road in Upper Nazareth Township.

15. Karla Dewey, 30, of Nazareth, is accused of sparking a blaze that destroyed the end unit of a row of townhouses at 40 N. Green St.; she is also accused of lighting poster board on fire at St. John's UCC.

16.  (from May 2011)
Royersford teen was scuba diving with his father at the Lower Nazareth water adventure park.

17. Nazareth Diner to Re-Open in May
A decision to renovate the Nazareth Diner's kitchen snowballed into major renovations for the diner's interior and exterior, according to owner Pete Theo.

18. Police in Upper Nazareth Township are looking for the owner of a dog found Dec. 13 near Tuskes Community Park.

19. Police: Nazareth Man Wrote Apology in Blood After Breaking Wife's Neck
After attempting suicide, Jason Gruver, of the 400 block of Union Street, allegedly wrote an apology in his own blood because he believed he had killed his wife.

20. Homeless Man in Viral Photo has Family in Nazareth Area
Kirk Hillman, identified by multiple media outlets as the brother of the homeless man who was photographed being given a pair of boots by a NYC police officer, lives in Plainfield Township and works at an Easton church.

21. Former Lower Nazareth Supervisor Charged in Prostitution Sting
Alan V. Dilsaver, 56, a Palmer Township dentist and former Lower Nazareth Township supervisor, was among the five men and one woman charged in a prostitution sting, according to Colonial Regional Police.

22. Video Shows Brutal Fight in Nazareth Boro-Park
Nazareth Police have copied a video posted to YouTube titled "Peter vs Connor," which shows two men beating each other in Nazareth Boro-Park.

23. Six people have been charged in a July melee that court records describe as revenge for an earlier fighter in which a male juvenile had his front teeth 'knocked to the bone.'

24. Pedestrian Struck by Vehicle Airlifted to Hospital
A 55-year-old Bethlehem man was severely injured Saturday after being struck by a vehicle in the 400 block of S. Main Street, Nazareth police said.

25. Nazareth Man Accused of Injuring Officer
A 26-year-old Nazareth man faces charges of injuring a Nazareth police officer who tried to serve him Friday with a notice not to trespass at his mother's house.

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