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Dec 29, 2011 7:49 PM by Melissa Hawkes

Top Ten Stories 2011

As 2011 comes to close, we take a look back at the year that was. It was a year filled with triumphs and tragedies. We start with the tenth most popular story on our website, which dates back to 1984.

An Abbeville family didn't know what happened to National Guardsman Joseph Schexnider for over 27 years. During renovations at the Bank of Abbeville, his skeletal remains were found inside the chimney by a construction worker. How he became wedged inside still remains a mystery, but his family was happy for some closure.

Number nine, a former Acension Epsicopal teacher is sentenced to 30 years in federal prison. Doctor Allison Hargrave enticed one of her 14 year old students to have sex with her and sent explicit e-mails and text messages to the student. Her attorney has since filed for an appeal saying 30 years is too harsh of a punishment.

Coming in at eight, an Acadiana marine is killed in Afghanistan. It was a life long dream of Iota native Matthew Richard to serve his country. He was killed in combat and his family laid him to rest in June. He was 21 years old.

Number seven, arrests are made in the murder of a University of Louisiana student. Twenty year-old Kenneth Donnelly was killed at his home on Mckinley Street back in October of 2010. Three men in their early twenties were arrested in January in connection with his murder. Two of the suspects have plead not guilty. All are heading to court next month.

An explosion at the Multi Chem plant in New Iberia sends plumes of smoke and chemicals up into the air which caused hundreds of people in the area to evacuate. No one was injured but roads and businesses were closed for days. The plant has since been leveled and the cause of the blast is still under investigation.

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