Editor's Note: As the end of the year approaches, we thought we'd take a look back at some top stories for 2012, month by month.
This time last year, Samantha Sproson, 38, was alive, living in Hermosa Beach. But something went wrong and the woman was shot dead in the early morning hours of Dec. 31. David Brian Abbott, another Hermosa Beach resident, has been charged with her murder, and has been winding his way through court. His trial is set to begin in 2013.
Updated: Hermosa Man Suspected of Killing Girlfriend to Appear in Court
- Related Hermosa Man in Court on Murder Charge
A beachgoer finds a suspicious item, prompting the beach and homes to be evacuated and the bomb squad called in.
A Palos Verdes man finds a very large lobster while diving in the Hermosa reef. Guess where the reef is and what else you can find there?
9-Pound Lobster Caught in Hermosa Reef
As 2012 came to a close, the grocery chain announced that it might close its stores. If that becomes the case, Fresh & Easy in Hermosa will be very short-lived.
Fresh & Easy to Open Wednesday
- Related: Fresh & Easy May Close SoCal Stores
Five killer whales later believed to have killed a sea lion before hooking up with five more orcas try to give a gray whale a bad time. Here are the details.
Orcas Harass Gray Whale off Nearby PV Peninsula
My Fit Foods opens its first California location in Hermosa Beach, serving pre-packaged and pre-portioned food. So far, it sounds like it's faring better than Fresh & Easy, its neighbor a few blocks away. Find out what their food is all about.
My Fit Foods to Open Soon
Redondo Beach musician Justin Hopkins goes on "The Voice." The singer also plays clubs in Hermosa Beach, including Cafe Boogaloo. At the show's conclusion, they elected to hold their after party at Hermosa's Saint Rocke.
Local Singer Justin Hopkins Earns Spot on 'The Voice'
- Related: Justin Hopkins Rocks 'The Voice'
- Related: Justin Hopkins to Appear on 'The Voice' Tonight
- Related: 'The Voice' After Party Rocks Saint Rocke Stage
Navy SEAL team members don't seek recognition. After they participated in killing Osama bin Laden and rescuing hostages from the clutches of Somali pirates, a Patch writer asked a SEAL some questions about what it takes to join this elite group.
A Navy SEAL's Tale of What it Takes
What used to be the Union Cattle Company got a new look, a new name and its own in-house brewery early in 2012. The restaurant continues to bring remarkable cuisine and craft brews to Hermosa Beach.
Abigaile Prepares for Opening Day
- Related: Video: Behind the Scenes at Abigaile
- Related: Abigaile Welcomes New Chef
- Related: Resurrected Brewery Brings Craft Beer to Hermosa
- Related: Craft Breweries on Rise in South Bay
Burgers make the world go 'round, and Hermosa Beach Patch readers really responded to this Patch poll. See who won.
Patch Poll: Best Burgers in Hermosa Beach