Stories about high-profile crimes, business announcements and several installments of a popular new series were among the most read on TelegraphHerald.com in 2021.
Here are the 20 stories that garnered the most views on the TH’s website.
1.) Dubuque police ID woman found dead at arboretum; ex charged with murder — Initial stories about the Jan. 31 murder of Jennifer Lopez, 20, whose body was found the following day at Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, actually represented three of the four most-read stories of the year. The TH had a story when a body was found; when she was identified and her ex-boyfriend was charged the following day; and when Richard L. Forsythe, of Galena, Ill., made his initial court appearance the day after that. Forsythe eventually pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced in November to 50 years in prison.
2.) Police: Dubuque man recorded himself choking, biting, throwing baby across room — Nicholas F. Beversdorf, 19, is charged with two counts of neglect or abandonment of a dependent person and six counts of child endangerment with injury for allegedly choking a 1-year-old girl twice, carrying her by her hair, biting her head and throwing her across a room onto a couch or bed. He has pleaded not guilty.
3.) From cornfield to baseball stadium: Workers ready Field of Dreams for MLB game — A detailed look at how crews constructed a Major League Baseball stadium at the Field of Dreams site in Dyersville, Iowa.
4.) Police: Dubuque woman faces felony charge related to badly injured toddler son — Kirsten E. Basten, 23, is charged with three counts of child endangerment with serious injury and neglect or abandonment of a dependent person. Court documents state that her 3-year-old son in June had “a fractured left elbow that was the result of an unwitnessed incident;” a burn or abrasion on his shoulder and bruising on his face. A second report said the boy previously was admitted to a hospital with ruptured-vein bleeding known as “subgaleal hematoma and extensive bruising on his torso,” and doctors also determined he had a fracture of his right arm that had since healed. She has pleaded not guilty.
5.) A life remembered: Family recalls Epworth man’s contagious smile, highlights need for brain health resources — An installment in senior reporter Bennet Goldstein’s “A life remembered” series, this story highlighted Matthew Boland, 35, who was known for his patient compassion, stubborn resolve and belly laughs. He died by suicide in January.
6.) TH EXCLUSIVE: Court documents reveal additional details of Dubuque death investigation — A search warrant application provided more details on the July death of Kylie J. Duster, 20, of Dubuque. Police had released few details about her death, but the document filed in court stated that she was found dead in her closet, with facial wounds and a cloth stuffed in her mouth.
7.) Dubuque restaurant to delay opening, seek new location — In April, the TH reported that plans were changing for an anticipated new Dubuque eatery. Birds, the restaurant planned to open at 801 Rhomberg Ave., was looking for a new location in Dubuque, following the termination of a development agreement between the city and the operating company developing the eatery, according to owner Kevin Scharpf, also the owner of Brazen Open Kitchen + Bar.
8.) Longtime Dubuque pizza restaurant moving to rural Peosta in place of another eatery — In May, the owners of Town Clock Inn confirmed plans to open a new location at 7653 Old Highway Road, which had housed the closing Junction 21 Restaurant and Bar. At the time, Town Clock Inn hoped to open in August, but recent social media posts indicate plans to open in mid-January.
9.) A life remembered: Dubuque woman leaves legacy of kindness — Another installment in the “A life remembered” series, this story highlighted Brielle Osthoff, 20, whose motto was “be kinder than necessary” and whose actions followed that mantra. She died by suicide in June.
10.) A life remembered: Asbury nurse a wild ray of sunshine — Another installment in the “A life remembered” series, this story highlighted Maggie Pearce, 25, a nurse who danced through life unapologetically, drawing people into her orbit with a radiant smile. She died unexpectedly in March at home.
11.) Owners: Dubuque bar to close unexpectedly when lease not renewed — In March, the owners of The Wolfhound bar in downtown Dubuque said it soon will close because its lease was not renewed by their landlord. The bar opened in April 2019 at 1103 Iowa St., the former home of The Aragon Tap. In October, Jubeck New World Brewing Co. signed a lease to expand into that space.
12.) Man accused of ‘stomping’ woman’s face, seriously injuring her in Dubuque — Kevin J. McGovern, 32, of Epworth, Iowa, is charged with willful injury causing serious injury for allegedly repeatedly punching a woman in the face, then when she was on the ground, stomping her in the face multiple times. The woman was diagnosed with fractures of her face, sinus, nose and eye socket, as well as injuries to her ear and nose. McGovern has pleaded not guilty.
13.) Dog breeder threatens to sue Platteville over permit issue — Platteville, Wis., kennel owner Dan Winch said in early December that if city leaders prevent him from continuing to breed dogs at his home, he would sue the city. The following week, he requested grant assistance to help him expedite the relocation of his business.
14.) Sink your teeth in: Dubuque eatery recognized among Top 10 burger joints in state — Features Editor Megan Gloss visited The Foodie Garage Eatery, 1091 University Ave., after it was named one of the top 10 burger joints in the state by the Iowa Beef Industry Council and Iowa Cattlemen’s Association.
15.) Biz Buzz: Dubuque restaurant closes; Elkader business poised to open; new gym in Galena — A March installment of the popular “Biz Buzz” series highlighted the closure of The Point Cafe in Dubuque; the coming opening of Gear Elkader in Elkader, Iowa; and the recent opening of The Fitness Foundry in Galena, Ill.
16.) Rural Dubuque County restaurant announces upcoming closure — In April, Junction 21 in rural Peosta, Iowa, announced its closure, though it subsequently was delayed. But the site now will be the new location of Town Clock Inn.
17.) Police: Dubuque woman arrested after child eats marijuana gummies, unresponsive for days — In May, Janika J. Williams, 23, was arrested for allegedly leaving three children unattended when one of them, a 2-year-old, ate an entire bag of marijuana gummies and slept for days. Williams was sentenced in October to two years of informal probation after pleading guilty to child endangerment.
18.) A life remembered: Dubuque business owner recalled for his generosity — Another installment in the “A life remembered” series, this story highlighted Jeff Faulhaber, 54, who, with his wife, owned Big Apple Bagels and who owned Faulhaber Auto Body. He died in September from bile duct cancer.
19.) TH EXCLUSIVE: Former Shopko to be razed, paving way for new business — In December, the TH reported that the former Shopko building, 255 John F. Kennedy Road, will be demolished this winter. Officials said a local company offering professional services likely would construct a new location at the site once the building has been demolished, though no specific details were revealed.
20.) Marijuana dispensary to soon open in downtown Galena — In January, the TH reported on plans to open a Verilife marijuana dispensary in a former bank at 115 Perry St. It opened in March.