Local

Local
7:00 am
Fri July 31, 2015

Spotlight On Atlanta-Based Artist Jean Alexander

A portrait of John Lennon by Atlanta-based artist Jean Alexander.
Credit Jean Alexander

Atlanta-based artist Jean Alexander can't remember a time when she wasn't drawing or painting.

The University of Georgia alum is a freelance portrait artist who also does architectural illustrations.

A sample of her works can be found on her website.

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A Closer Look
3:54 pm
Thu July 30, 2015

Peachtree Hills Vet In Running For Top Dog In Vet Contest

Veterinarian Duffy Jones with Atlanta's Peachtree Hills Animal Hospital shows one of his client's children how to exam their pet's foot. Jones says pets are living longer than ever these days.
Credit Courtesy of Peachtree Hills Animal Hospital

Pet owners know how important it is to have a good veterinarian, just as important for many, as having a good medical doctor.

But is your vet in the running for the title of “America’s Favorite Vet?” If he’s Dr. Duffy Jones of Atlanta’s Peachtree Hills Animal Hospital, he is.

Jones, a veterinarian and president of the Georgia Veterinary Medical Association, is one of 20 finalists in the annual contest sponsored by the American Veterinary Medical Foundation.

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A Closer Look
3:33 pm
Thu July 30, 2015

Real Estate Agent Safety Top Priority After Gwinnett Attack

Real estate broker Nancy Dowson, right, with Keller Williams Realty, shows a house to prospective buyer Mary Tuttle. Agents have guidelines they use to remain safe when showing strangers empty houses.
Credit Wilfredo Lee / AP Photo

Real estate agents can face danger on the job. Last week a metro Atlanta realtor was attacked by a man while showing a house alone in Gwinnett County.

In another widely covered incident this year, Clayton County Sheriff Victor Hill was charged with reckless conduct for shooting and injuring a real estate agent.

Agents can often find themselves alone with people they don’t know in empty houses.

“We’re vulnerable because we’re out there showing homes to strangers,” Atlanta Board of Realtors president Ennis Antoine said during an interview on “A Closer Look.”

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Local
12:22 pm
Thu July 30, 2015

Many Gwinnett Food Pantries Have Nearly Bare Shelves

The Quinn House in Lawrenceville has a senior food box program that distributes groceries, toiletries and household items to about 125 local senior citizens every month. Pictured from left are volunteers Alex Lopez, Keith Mays, Norbert Goodrum and Scott Alexander. The Quinn House says some of its shelves are almost empty.
Credit Courtesy of Gene Brinkley

The shelves are nearly empty at many major Gwinnett County food pantries.

During the summer, with kids out of school, there's greater demand and use of food banks. 

"A number of our major food banks are running low or have bare shelves," said Suzy Bus with the Gwinnett Coalition for Health and Human Services. "The Southeast Gwinnett Cooperative Ministry in Snellville, the North Gwinnett Cooperative in Buford and many others don't have enough food to be able to serve the families that come to them." 

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Local
12:15 pm
Thu July 30, 2015

Confederate Flags Placed At Ebenezer Church Near MLK Center

Atlanta Police Chief George Turner, right, speaks next to Judy Forte, Superintendent of the MLK National Historic Site, during a news conference after Confederate flags were found on the premises of Ebenezer Baptist Church Thursday in Atlanta. U.S. authorities are investigating after several Confederate battle flags were discovered near the church and a civil rights center named after Martin Luther King, an iconic leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement, Thursday morning.
Credit David Goldman / Associated Press

Federal authorities and police are investigating after four Confederate battle flags were found on the grounds of the Ebenezer Baptist Church near the Martin Luther King Jr. Center in Atlanta.

Atlanta Police Officer Gary Wade says a maintenance worker discovered the flags at 6 a.m. Thursday and notified the National Park Service, which operates the nearby King Center. Wade says no one saw who placed the flags, which weren't stuck in the ground but instead set neatly on top of it. 

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Local
12:03 pm
Thu July 30, 2015

Marietta Councilman Calls For Changes In Ga. Fireworks Law

Marietta Councilman Johnny Walker says cities should have more of a say over their own noise ordinances when it comes to fireworks.
Credit Stephen Gunby / flickr.com/stephen_gunby

Marietta City Councilman Johnny Walker said a new state law that legalizes fireworks should be rewritten. The call comes after residents complained. The issue was discussed Wednesday night during a Marietta City Council committee meeting.

Walker said since the new state law went into effect July 1, many residents aren't happy about fireworks going off late at night.

“Small children don’t like it; people that have to work, the fire department really doesn’t like it; the police department doesn’t like it. People just don’t want to hear sounds constantly,” Walker said.

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Local
10:05 am
Thu July 30, 2015

Missing Southwest Florida Dog Turns Up In Atlanta

A southwest Florida family has been reunited with their dog after she turned up several weeks later in Atlanta, more than 500 miles away.

Michael Epstein told the Sarasota Herald-Tribune that his family's 3-year-old miniature Australian shepherd, Abby, was lost on July 3. She ran away from the family's yard when fireworks frightened her.

Family members spent the next three weeks putting up signs around Sarasota and even created a website, findabby.com.

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Local
10:01 am
Thu July 30, 2015

Disguised Metro Atlanta Police Crackdown On Texting Drivers

Some officers with the Marietta police went undercover as construction workers to catch drivers in the act of texting and driving.
Credit Courtesy of the city of Marietta

A metro Atlanta police department is using disguised officers to try catching drivers who are texting behind the wheel.

Marietta police officers dressed as construction workers on Wednesday were monitoring drivers at a busy intersection to bust motorists who were texting on the road, WSB-TV reported.

Marietta Police Officer Nick Serkedakis says the tactic helps officers get close enough to drivers' cars to determine whether they're texting or using their phones while driving.

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Local
5:03 pm
Wed July 29, 2015

Atlanta Breaks Ground On First Infrastructure Bond Project

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, center, helps city officials Wednesday break ground on the first of hundreds of planned infrastructure improvements tied to millions in bond money.
Credit Michell Eloy / WABE

City of Atlanta officials Wednesday broke ground on the first of hundreds of planned projects tied to millions in bond money for infrastructure repairs. 

Near the intersection of Cascade Road and Lynhurst Drive on the city’s southwest side, Mayor Kasim Reed and a handful of city officials helped kicked off construction for road repaving, sidewalks repairs and new street lights. 

“We’re going to be improving this city in a way that hasn’t been done in 40 or 50 years above ground,” Reed said.

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Local
3:33 pm
Wed July 29, 2015

Atlanta Police Chief To Lead State Police Chiefs Association

Atlanta's Chief George Turner has been named the new president of the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police.
Credit John Bazemore / Associated Press

 

Atlanta's police chief has been named the new president of the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police.

An association news release says Chief George Turner assumed the role of 2015/2016 president on Tuesday. The association represents more than 500 chiefs of police and other heads of law enforcement agencies across the state.

Part of Turner's new duties include chairing the association's executive board and appointing committee chairs.

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Local
11:21 am
Wed July 29, 2015

UGA Makes Plans To Boost Faculty Numbers Over The Next Year

The University of Georgia is increasing its staff over the next year, by adding 56 new faculty members.
Credit StevenV / Flickr.com/stevenv

Bulldog Nation will boost its staff, and officials say this will result in a better overall experience for students. The University of Georgia plans to hire 56 new faculty members by 2016. This will increase the school's faculty size by nearly 3 percent. And having more staff will trim the student-to-teacher ratio in many classes to below 20. “I think overall it will help students have more success at UGA, beyond UGA and just leave UGA having a better experience,” said Rahul Shrivastav, vice president of instruction at UGA. These faculty additions will cost the school nearly $4.5 million. 

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Local
9:57 am
Wed July 29, 2015

Ex-Georgia Deputy Sheriff Pleads Not Guilty In Botched Raid

A former Habersham County deputy sheriff has pleaded not guilty to providing false information to get a warrant that led to a botched raid that left a toddler critically injured.

Attorney Jeff Brickman told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Tuesday that Nikki Autry never intentionally misled the judge who signed a no-knock warrant that led to a member of a task force throwing a flash grenade into a home.

Authorities have said 19-month-old Bounkham Phonesavanh was critically injured when the device landed in his playpen.

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Local
9:34 am
Wed July 29, 2015

Georgia Back-To-School Tax Holiday Begins Friday

As parents and students get ready for the start of school, they can get a sales tax break on items needed for the classroom, including computers, beginning Friday.
Credit John Konstantaras / AP Images for Kmart

    

 

Georgia retail officials say an upcoming sales tax holiday is meant to offer shoppers back-to-school savings.

Georgia Retail Association spokesman James Miller said in a statement that sales taxes are being dropped from back-to-school goods including clothes and shoes worth less than $100, computers, school supplies and more. Georgia's sales tax holiday runs Friday and Saturday.

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Local
6:51 am
Wed July 29, 2015

Kennesaw State University Celebrates Graduation Milestone

Kennesaw State University hits a milestone Wednesday -- its 100,000th graduate.
Credit Stephen Rahn / flickr.com/srahn

It's a big day for the third-largest university in Georgia.

On Wednesday afternoon, Kennesaw State University will celebrate its 100,000th graduate.

"The growth that we've experienced thus far has been tremendous, but I really think the best is yet to come.  I think we are poised to become one of the most outstanding universities in the nation over this decade, and I look forward to being a part of that," said Michael Sanseviro, the associate vice president and dean of students at the school.

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Books
5:18 pm
Tue July 28, 2015

10th Annual Decatur Book Festival Schedule Released

Erica Jong, author of the 1970s feminist classic ''Fear of Flying,'' will be the keynote speaker at this year's Decatur Book Festival.
Credit TimothyJ / flickr.com/tjc

 

Bookworms get ready.

On Tuesday, the full schedule was released for the 10th annual Decatur Book Festival, sponsored by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The theme for this year’s festival, which take place Sept. 4-6 in downtown Decatur, is “Read Different,” urging book lovers to “read beyond what you normally do,” especially as it relates to race, gender, form and genre.

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Crime
11:24 am
Tue July 28, 2015

Norcross Adds 2 Motorcycle Officers To Catch Distracted Drivers

The city of Norcross has added two new full-time positions to its police force to patrol the streets and highway for distracted driving. The goal is to reduce the number of traffic accidents.
Credit Courtesy of the Norcross Police Department

In 2012, the city of Norcross annexed about two miles near Jimmy Carter Boulevard on I-85. That's when it saw the number of traffic accidents more than double from 650 to 1,600 per year. 

The police department spent more than a year crunching the numbers, trying to figure out why.

Norcross Police Capt. Bill Grogan said they discovered that most traffic accidents were caused by distracted drivers.

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Local
11:23 am
Tue July 28, 2015

Atlanta To Honor 25th Anniversary Of Winning Olympics Bid

City officials will commemorate the anniversary of winning the Olympic bid for the 1996 games.
Credit Alison Guillory / WABE

It changed the face of Atlanta, and it's going to be honored fondly.

In the early 1990s Atlanta beat out five other cities to win the bid to host the 1996 Olympics.

It was a moment that put an international spotlight on Atlanta, and city officials have announced plans to celebrate its anniversary.

On Sept. 18, a reunion party will be held for the city officials who represented the city in its final Olympic bid in Tokyo back in 1990.

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Local
10:04 am
Tue July 28, 2015

Residents Say Sweltering Heat Persists At Friendship Tower

Despite assurances from Friendship Tower managers that the air conditioning problems had been fixed, residents say sweltering conditions continue.
Credit Stephanie M. Lennox / WABE

 

Residents of Atlanta's Friendship Tower apartment building say the sweltering heat inside is continuing, despite assurances from the building's managers that the air conditioning has been fixed.

Tenant Linda Brooks tells WSB-TV that cool air hasn't reached some of the units and hallways.

Residents have pleaded with Friendship Baptist Church, which owns the building, to fix what tenants said was a faulty air conditioning system that allowed temperatures inside to soar.

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Local
10:02 am
Tue July 28, 2015

Stray Bullet Kills Atlanta Woman, 81, As She Played Cards On Porch

Authorities say a stray bullet killed an 81-year-old woman as she played cards on her screened-in porch in Atlanta.

Atlanta police searching for the person who fired the shot.

Police say Mildred Martin was playing cards at her home in northwest Atlanta on Monday night when a bullet pierced the enclosed porch and struck her in the back.

The gunfire happened about 200 yards from Martin's house on Proctor Street, based on where crime scene technicians found shell casings, WSB-TV reports. 

Local
8:03 am
Tue July 28, 2015

Kroger Recalls Spices Due To Salmonella Concerns

The Kroger Co. announces a recall of some of its spices.
Credit April Williams / WABE

Take a close look inside your kitchen.

Georgia is among the states affected by a recall from the Kroger Co. The grocery giant says it’s recalling four of its store-brand spices.

They are Kroger’s Ground Cinnamon, Garlic Powder, Coarse Ground Black Pepper and its Bac'n Buds.

Officials say there’s a chance these items might be contaminated with salmonella. The Food and Drug Administration said a sample taken from a South Carolina store was tainted.

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Local
7:32 am
Tue July 28, 2015

All Clear: DeKalb County Lifts Boil Water Advisory

Signs like this one in a Maggiano's restaurant could be found across DeKalb County during the boil water advisory. The advisory was lifted Monday.
Credit John Haas / WABE

DeKalb County lifted a boil water advisory Monday night that had been in place since Saturday afternoon. In a news release, the county said, “DeKalb residents countywide can resume normal use of water.”

The release said DeKalb County, working with the Georgia Environmental Protection Division, tested more than 100 water samples collected Friday through Sunday and found no water quality issues.

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Local
5:07 pm
Mon July 27, 2015

Bobby Brown Says Loss Of Daughter Is 'Unimaginable'

Singer Whitney Houston, right, sings with her daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown during a performance for “Good Morning America” in Central Park on Sept. 1, 2009, in New York. Brown died Sunday at 22 years old.
Credit Evan Agostini / Associated Press

R&B singer Bobby Brown says the loss of daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown at age 22 is "unimaginable."

"Krissy was and is an angel," he said in a statement Monday. "I am completely numb at this time."

Bobbi Kristina Brown died Sunday at Peachtree Christian Hospice in Duluth, Georgia, about six months after she was found, face-down and unresponsive in a bathtub in her suburban Atlanta townhome on Jan. 31.

A police report earlier this year described the incident as a drowning.

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Local
3:36 pm
Mon July 27, 2015

Emory Receives $1M Donation For Religious Freedom Instruction

Emory University’s law school has received an anonymous $1 million gift to train law students in religious freedom.
Credit Daniel Mayer / Wikimedia Commons

Emory University’s law school has received an anonymous $1 million gift to train law students in religious freedom. The donation comes as state lawmakers wrestle with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights and religious freedom legislation.

The project is supposed to give students hands-on experience and provide non-partisan information on religious freedom. 

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Local
12:43 pm
Mon July 27, 2015

MARTA Launching Free Wi-Fi, Uber Partnership

MARTA is launching wireless Internet on 50 buses on several routes.
Credit Allison Guillory / WABE

Leaders of Atlanta's public transit authority say they're launching a partnership with Uber and offering free Wi-Fi to improve service.

The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority announced recently that the agency is launching wireless Internet on 50 buses on several routes, and the agency is partnering with Uber to offer passengers opportunities to transfer to private vehicles in areas without train or bus service.

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Local
11:56 am
Mon July 27, 2015

DeKalb County Residents Still Under Boil Water Advisory

Residents of DeKalb County are being advised to boil water before drinking it, using it for cooking or preparing baby food.
Credit zeevveez / flickr.com/zeevveez

Residents of a metro Atlanta county are being told to boil their water as crews try to repair a broken water main.

DeKalb County officials said in a statement Saturday that crews are trying to repair the 48-inch water line and water pressure has been reduced three times within 36 hours — which could lead to water quality issues throughout the county.

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Atlanta Sounds
11:43 am
Mon July 27, 2015

AWARE Takes Care Of Atlanta's Sick Or Injured Wild Animals

Wildlife Rehabilitator, Marjan Ghadrdan with owls Ellis and Cricket.
Dave Barasoian

For those of us with an injured or sick pet, we know the veterinarian's office is always an option, but what if you've found a wild animal in need of help? 

That is where AWARE, the Atlanta Wild Animal Rescue Effort, might be able to help.

The staff, interns and volunteers at this wildlife refuge care for orphaned and injured animals like opossums, turtles and owls.

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Local
10:57 am
Mon July 27, 2015

Gas Prices Continue To Fall In Metro Atlanta, AAA Reports

Prices at the pump keep dropping in metro Atlanta.
Credit Rori-Tai Williams / WABE

Good news for commuters in metro Atlanta.

The average price for a gallon of gas here is $2.64, according to AAA. That's down about 5 cents from last week and 15 cents from last month.

"Motorists are finally getting some consistent relief at the pump thanks to declining oil prices. By this fall, prices could creep closer to levels seen at the beginning of this year, possibly even below $2 a gallon in some markets, as long as oil remains low," AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins said.   

The statewide average is $2.55, about 16 cents below the national average.

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Local
10:13 am
Mon July 27, 2015

APS To Put Cameras On Buses To Catch Drivers Illegally Passing

American Traffic Solutions is planning to mount cameras on the side of Atlanta Public School buses.
Credit Staff / PBA30

Atlanta Public Schools is planning to mount cameras on school buses to catch drivers who illegally pass while the buses are stopped.

Arizona-based American Traffic Solutions is planning to mount cameras on the side of APS buses, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. The cameras will automatically detect drivers who pass the stop arm when it is deployed and will capture video and still images.

ATS has also mounted cameras to buses in Gwinnett, Cobb and Clayton county school buses, and buses in Marietta and Decatur as well.

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Local
9:50 am
Mon July 27, 2015

Official: Air Conditioning Fixed In Atlanta's Friendship Tower

Lloyd Hawk, president of Friendship Tower Inc., said the new cooling units are operating at full capacity.
Credit Stephanie M. Lennox / WABE

  
The president of an Atlanta apartment building says a new air conditioning system has been installed and is working.

Lloyd Hawk, president of Friendship Tower Inc., told CBS 46 that the new cooling units are operating at full capacity.

Residents had pleaded with Friendship Baptist Church, which owns the building, to fix what tenants said was a faulty air conditioning system that allowed temperatures inside to soar.

A group of residents went to court in an attempt to force the owners to find a solution.

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Local
11:02 pm
Sun July 26, 2015

Medical Examiner: Autopsy Planned For Bobbi Kristina Brown

Bobbi Kristina Brown died Sunday about 7 months after she was found face-down and unresponsive in a bathtub.
Credit Jordan Strauss/Invision / Associated Press

Authorities say an autopsy will be needed to evaluate what led to the death of Bobbi Kristina Brown, daughter of singer Whitney Houston.

In a statement Monday morning, the Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office says the time that elapsed from when she was found unresponsive until her death Sunday will "complicate" its effort to reconstruct what happened.

Bobbi Kristina died Sunday at Peachtree Christian Hospice in Duluth, Georgia, about six months after she was found Jan. 31, face-down and unresponsive in a bathtub in her suburban Atlanta townhome. She was 22.

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