Elly Yu | WABE 90.1 FM

Elly Yu


Elly Yu is a reporter at WABE, where she first got her start in public radio as an graduate student intern in 2013. Since then, she’s reported for WNYC, NPR, and Marketplace among others.  In 2014, Elly was awarded with an immigration reporting fellowship from the Institute for Justice and Journalism.

Elly holds a bachelor’s in international relations from the University of Southern California, and a master’s in journalism from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, where she co-hosted a podcast. 

Al Such / WABE

The Georgia Supreme Court Monday dismissed the city of Atlanta’s attempt to annex valuable property in part of unincorporated Fulton County.

In a unanimous decision, the court threw out the case, saying Atlanta didn’t pass a local annexation ordinance and that the court couldn’t rule on proposed legislation.

Dave Martin / associated press file

Georgia's craft brewers spoke before a House committee Thursday, saying a change in the state's beer laws would help their bottom line.  

In 2015, the General Assembly passed a law that would allow breweries to distribute beer directly to customers as part of a tour package. The take-home beers would come as “souvenirs” and capped at 72 ounces, or about a six-pack, but breweries cannot sell directly on premises.

Elly Yu / WABE

In the wake of recent police shootings across the country, Fulton County’s police chief said he’s considering the creation of special units to help officers in the field respond to people with mental illnesses.

At a meeting of Fulton County mayors Wednesday, Chief Gary Stiles cited the recent fatal shooting this week of a black man in California, when police were called to investigate a report about a mentally unstable man.  

David Goldman / Associated Press

State lawmakers have launched an effort to help funnel money to Georgia’s rural hospitals through a state tax credit program.

Protestors moved toward the Martin Luther King National Historic Site in Atlanta during a protest on September 23, 2016.
Al Such / WABE

On Friday evening, hundreds rallied at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, before marching to Ebenezer Baptist Church and then to the Atlanta Police Department's headquarters, where they occupied space peacefully until midnight. 

Attorney Mawuli Davis and Georgia NAACP President Francys Johnson led the crowd Friday evening, marching through the streets of downtown Atlanta. 

Davis said people didn't have to look far when it came to police shootings, calling out names of those who had been killed by law enforcement in the Atlanta area.

Georgia House of Representatives livestream (screenshot by Elly Yu)

A member of Georgia's judicial watchdog agency defended the agency’s work in front of a state House committee Thursday, while agreeing the agency needs changes.

State lawmakers this year passed legislation that would allow voters to decide in November whether or not to overhaul the Judicial Qualifications Commission, which handles ethics complaints against judges.

AP file

Georgia Rep. Hank Johnson introduced legislation in Congress this week in an effort to boost protection for voting systems following recent federal warnings about cybersecurity threats.

“The threat to our voting process is clear and present,” Johnson said.  He cited the recent hackings at the Democratic National Committee and attempts into voter systems in other states.

Elly Yu / WABE

Former House Speaker and Georgia Congressman Newt Gingrich called Georgia a “key battleground” at a town hall for the Trump campaign Monday at Kennesaw State University.  

Gingrich spoke to a crowd of more than 100 supporters, some who were wearing newly-minted shirts with the word “deplorables.” Groups of students in between classes also stood towards the back of the room to hear Gingrich speak.

Elly Yu / WABE

A Fulton County judge ruled on Thursday that Atlanta's recent annexations of several neighborhoods in unincorporated South Fulton are not valid.

Atlanta annexed five neighborhoods in the area earlier this year – neighborhoods that could become part of a different city: the city of South Fulton. In November, voters in the only unincorporated part left of Fulton County will decide whether or not to incorporate.

In his decision Thursday, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Alford Dempsey ruled the city’s annexation process was “untimely” and didn’t follow state law.

Michael Conroy / Associated Press

ITT Technical Institute is closing its four campuses in the metro Atlanta area, along with dozens of others across the country, becoming the latest for-profit school to shut down after federal scrutiny.

Katie Peace said she graduated from ITT Technical Institute’s Kennesaw campus with a degree in science and criminal justice four years ago. This week, she, like many students and alumni, heard the news that the college was shutting down.

“How could I have wasted two years in a school that now is nothing?” she said.

Peace said she’s worried about her credentials.

Charles Krupa / Associated Press

JetBlue will start flying daily flights from Atlanta to Boston in March, the company said.

JetBlue's second take at Atlanta's airport shows a new strategy, said Seth Kaplan, an analyst with Airline Weekly. The airline flew out of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport more than a decade ago, but left after stiff competition from Delta.

"Look, it's never easy competing against Delta," Kaplan said. "Delta's a fierce competitor. But this time JetBlue is doing it in a much smarter way than it did last time."


State lawmakers on Thursday will begin a series of hearings to look into how the state’s judicial watchdog agency operates.

The Judicial Qualifications Commission investigates complaints of misconduct against state judges, but some state lawmakers have raised questions about the agency’s transparency.

“It serves as an autonomous body,” said state Rep. Wendell Willard (R-Sandy Springs), who chairs the study committee about the commission. “No one has any say-so over their actions and the way they conduct their business.”

Robert Ray / Associated Press


The Bibb County Sheriff's Office in Macon will auction off confiscated guns for the first time this Saturday. The auction stems from a state law that was changed four years ago, said Bibb County Sheriff David Davis.

Before 2012, unclaimed weapons and other firearms no longer needed as evidence could be destroyed to be used as scrap metal, Davis said.

Alison Guillory / WABE

Georgia lawmakers are grappling with how to solve traffic congestion in the metro Atlanta area, as they study regional transit options throughout this summer and fall.

Both Georgia’s House and Senate have study committees to look at the issue and create recommendations by the end of this year ahead of the legislative session that starts in January.  

The aim is to help come up with a governance model that help could bring together the region’s various transit systems and local governments, said State Rep. Chuck Martin (R-Alpharetta).

Elly Yu / WABE

The family of a man who died after being repeatedly stunned with Tasers by Coweta County Sheriff's deputies last year is asking the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate his death.

Video footage of the incident obtained by the New York Times show deputies struggling with Sherman, who was handcuffed, stunning him multiple times before they realized he wasn’t breathing.

Elly Yu / WABE

Georgia's demographics have been changing. Since the 1990s, the state's Latino population has grown nearly tenfold to nearing a million people. 

One indicator of those demographics changing is the candidacy of Brenda Lopez.  The immigration attorney is set to become the first Latina to enter the Georgia Legislature. Lopez, a Democrat, won May's primary elections and is running unopposed in November for House District 99. Her hope, she says, is to help connect Georgia’s growing immigrant communities to the people in power in her state. 

 In this Sept. 29, 2014 file photo, Secretary of State Brian Kemp announces a March 6, 2012 date, as Georgia's 2012 presidential primary at a news conference in Atlanta.
David Goldman / Associated Press

Georgia's top election official says the state is prepared if hackers target its election systems in light of evidence of hacking in two other states.

"It's been in our radar, it will continue to be on our radar,” said Secretary of State Brian Kemp Tuesday. “We're working hard everyday to make sure that those type of things don't happen in Georgia. And then if for some reason they were to happen, we have plans to deal with that.”

Alex Brandon / Associated Press

Vice presidential nominee Mike Pence will be in Georgia Monday, holding two rallies and a fundraiser for presidential nominee Donald Trump.  

The Indiana governor will be in Perry for a public rally at 2 p.m., and in Marietta for another public rally at the Cobb-Marietta Coliseum at the Cobb Galleria Center at 7:30 p.m. He’ll also be at a private fundraiser in the Atlanta area in between at 5 p.m., according to a spokesperson with Georgia Republican Party.  

Dario Lopez-Mills / Associated Press

Lawyers for a group of people suing DeKalb County over its old court system are seeking class-action status, saying the court could have potentially mishandled thousands of other traffic cases.  

The lawsuit, which includes 17 plaintiffs, alleges DeKalb County’s Recorders Court reported mistakes about people’s traffic cases to the state Department of Driver Services. That led, the suit says, to the wrongful suspension of people’s driver’s licenses or the failure to reinstate a license.

 Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin, Ga.
Kate Brumback / Associated Press

Immigrants detained in Georgia’s immigration detention centers were deported at a higher percentage rate in the last fiscal year and were less likely to receive bond than immigrants in detention centers nationwide, according to an analysis by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

The organization said it used data obtained from U.S. Immigration and Customers Enforcement that looked at data in fiscal year 2015 from October 2014 to July 2015.

A sign marks the entrance to a gender neutral restroom at the University of Vermont in Burlington, Vt., Thursday, Aug. 23, 2007.
Toby Talbot / Associated Press


Georgians are expressing mixed reactions on a judge's order this week to block President Barack Obama's guidelines on which bathrooms transgender students can use in schools.

Elly Yu / WABE

In December, Dora Hernandez was waiting for her son to come home, having prepared him food – eggs and refried beans.

Her son, Jaime Arceno Hernandez, had gone to the immigration court office in Atlanta that morning, like he had done several times since he crossed the border illegally two years ago when he was 16, she said. He, like many unaccompanied minors who were stopped at the border, were given court hearings to try to contest deportation.

As it got later in the day, she kept texting him about why he hadn’t come back yet. Jaime didn’t respond.

AP file

A group of advocacy organizations filed a federal lawsuit against Gwinnett County Monday over district lines and at-large voting, claiming the voting method prevents minority voters from being able to elect candidates of their choosing.  

The suit argues that no minority has ever been elected to the county’s Board of Commissioners and Board of Education. More than half the population in Gwinnett County is black, Latino or Asian-American, according to U.S. Census data.

John Konstantaras / AP Images for Kmart

Georgians will get a break on sales tax this weekend as part of the state's annual tax-free holiday in time for back-to-school shopping.

State officials tout the weekend as way for families to save money – and retail associations see it as a way to get a boost. But analysts say the holiday doesn’t all up to all that much in an increase in total spending.

“All it does is change the timing of the activity,” said Thomas Smith, an economist and finance professor at Emory University’s Goizeuta Business School.   

Lt. Rebecca Rebarich/U.S. Navy via AP

Georgia's coastal military bases are under threat from rising sea levels caused by climate change, according to a new report.

The Union of Concerned Scientists in the analysis found that Hunter Army Airfield in Savannah and Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay will experience more flooding and could permanently lose land by the end of the century. The report analyzed 18 military bases along the East Coast and Gulf of Mexico.

Elly Yu / WABE

With controversy over the new Atlanta Braves stadium still looming, Cobb County Commission Chairman Tim Lee was defeated during the primary runoff election Tuesday night.

Lee lost to challenger Mike Boyce, a retired Marine colonel, who had criticized Lee for the way he handled the Braves coming to the county, saying the deal lacked transparency and public input.

Unofficial county results showed Boyce winning with 63.94 percent to Lee’s 36.06 percent.

Elly Yu / WABE

Atlanta police Officer Mike Costello is one of those guys that still loves vinyl records.

“This is precious cargo, right here,” he says, pointing to his record collection. It’s moving day for Costello on a Wednesday earlier this spring, and boxes of items are still scattered around his new house – but he already has his records neatly lined up.

A New Jersey native, Costello picks out a Bruce Springsteen record to play while he and his family unpack.

Youngest delegate 17-year-old Clarissa Rodriguez of Texas and the oldest delegate 93-year-old Ruby Gilliam of Ohio deliver the pledge of Allegiance during the first day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia , Monday, July 25, 2016.
Carolyn Kaster / AP Photo


Georgia's Democrats are in Philadelphia this week for the national convention, where they say the state could be a key battleground in November, though it's not the first time Democrats have made the case that Georgia could turn “purple.”

In 2014, Democrats made the pitch in 2014 when Jason Carter, grandson of former President Jimmy Carter, ran for governor, and Michelle Nunn, daughter of former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn, ran for an open Senate seat.

Despite their family names, both Democrats lost, getting 45 percent of the vote to the Republicans’ 53 percent.  

Elly Yu / WABE

In the lobby outside Citizens Trust Bank in downtown Atlanta, a steady trickle of regular customers walk in for their errands.

For 28-year-old Shawn McClure, he’s here for the first time to open an account, responding to a social media call around the hashtag #BankBlack. The movement has gone viral in response to recent fatal police shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile in Louisiana and Minnesota.

“I think this is a big way to start, especially, economically,” McClure said.

McAfee Rd passes over the Buena Vista Lake Dam in Decatur (Dekalb County).
Alison Guillory / WABE

Hundreds of miles of roads in DeKalb County will have to wait on special funds for resurfacing until state lawmakers can change a wording error in state law.

DeKalb County Commissioners voted this week against putting a special penny sales tax on November’s ballot because if the tax was approved, it would trigger an end to some property tax breaks for homeowners because of how one two-page state bill had been written.