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Lawsuit Alleges Atlanta Mayor Misused Police Car Funding

Apr 12, 2017
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed refused to answer questions about the lawsuit and walked away from reporters.
Patrick Semansky / Associated Press

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed isn't talking about a whistleblower lawsuit filed against the city.

The allegation is that Reed's administration used money for police cars to buy personal cars for the mayor and his family and that Atlanta police officers drove and escorted Reed and family members on personal errands.

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David Goldman / Associated Press

Wednesday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

Ali Guillory / WABE

The Georgia Department of Transportation is being sued for the noise its making as it repairs the collapsed I-85 bridge.

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Neighborhood Near I-85 Collapse Feels Traffic Pressure

Apr 12, 2017
Adhiti Bandlamudi / WABE

Since the collapse of the Interstate 85 overpass, many people have had to find creative ways to get where they need to be. But neighborhoods near the collapse site have had to deal with more traffic as a result. 

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The traffic in Morningside is so bad these days, it's hard for locals to even get off their block. Winston Wiant, a Morningside resident, said ever since the bridge collapsed, a lot more drivers have been cutting through her neighborhood. 

Ali Guillory / WABE

Residents of the brand new city of South Fulton are choosing their first mayor and City Council.

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Early voting in the runoff election is this week, and election day is Tuesday.

Todd Kirkland / associated press

Atlanta United President Darren Eales said Tuesday construction on Mercedes-Benz Stadium remains on schedule for the Major League Soccer team to play the first game in the facility on July 30.

"At this stage, it is still as planned," Eales said.

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Even so, Atlanta United owner Arthur Blank acknowledged the complex retractable roof on the $1.5 billion stadium has been a challenge.

Fulton County Jail via AP

The homeless man accused of setting the fire that caused the Interstate 85 bridge to collapse March 30 has a high-powered legal team.

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According to court records filed last week, at least four private attorneys said they'd represent Basil Eleby pro bono. Those lawyers are Mawuli Davis, Tiffany Roberts, Gary Spencer and Lawrence Zimmerman.

Eleby is facing two felony charges of arson and damage to property.

Mike Stewart / Associated Press

Tuesday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

This weekend is filled with Atlanta Easter egg hunts, including a nighttime hunt and one with a helicopter.
Pixabay

Looking for some last-minute Atlanta Easter egg hunts for your family to enjoy this week? Atlanta PlanIt is sharing some of Atlanta’s best — and most unique — Easter egg hunts happening this Friday and Saturday.

Traditional egg hunts are still a classic way to celebrate the Easter holiday, but also consider trying something new. There’s a black-light flashlight hunt, a hunt where eggs are dropped from a helicopter, and a hunt that ends with tethered hot air balloon rides.

CEO Mike Thurmond says DeKalb County has held 37,000 water bills since last year.
WABE

DeKalb County officials are meeting with the public today to discuss the area's water-billing problems.

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Representatives from DeKalb County Utility Customer Operations will take questions from customers at the Maloof Auditorium from 4 to 6 p. m.

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed refused to answer questions about the lawsuit and walked away from reporters.
Patrick Semansky / Associated Press

Atlanta's mayor has temporarily suspended non-emergency construction activity during the reconstruction of a collapsed section of Interstate 85.

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Mayor Kasim Reed's office said in a news release Monday that Reed issued an executive order suspending the work between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m. from Monday through Friday for parts of the city. Reed says the suspension of construction work is meant to help ease traffic congestion.

David Goldman / Associated Press

Construction is ahead of schedule to repair the Interstate 85 overpass, which collapsed after a fire. And that's despite the shortage of construction workers in Atlanta.

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To repair the overpass and meet the June 15 deadline, construction company CW Matthews took skilled workers from other projects, according to David Moellering, the executive director of the Georgia Highway Contractors' Association. 

Alison Guillory / WABE

Like so many in Atlanta, Yeou Jih grapples with choosing how she will get to work every day. In the wake of the Interstate 85 bridge collapse, that decision has become even tougher. Georgia hopes to help commuters decide on transportation that's better for the environment - and roads - with an incentive program.

Jih, who commutes from Norcross to her job downtown at the Atlanta Mayor’s Office of Sustainability – a distance of 22 miles each way, was looking for options when she stumbled upon Georgia Commute Options.

PBS

Monday on "Closer Look with Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

Ric Feld / Associated Press

Operations at Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines are just about back to normal. On Monday the airline expected only a handful of canceled flights.

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That's after the airline faced days of flight cancelations following last Wednesday's severe storms. In total, Delta had to ground about 3,500 flights.

Dave Tulis / Associated Press file

Former Atlanta Braves player Otis Nixon, who went missing last weekend, has been located, police said Monday.

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Nixon has been found and he's "safe," said Brittany Duncan, a spokeswoman for police in Woodstock, a suburb northwest of Atlanta. She had no other details about his condition, where he was found or the circumstances.

Duncan said there was no foul play involved, and that Woodstock police consider the case closed.

 Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory was the main celebrant and homilist for the second annual Red Mass in 2007 at Sacred Heart Church, Atlanta.
Michael Alexander / Georgia Bulletin

As Christians began to observe Holy Week, the leader of the world's Catholics was preparing for a two-day visit to Egypt despite the recent deadly bombings at Christian churches there. Among other things, the April 28-29 visit by Pope Francis is aimed at further improving relations between the Catholic Church and the world's Muslims.

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Seth Wenig / Associated Press

Atlanta Hawks player Thabo Sefolosha says he'll donate a "substantial portion" of his settlement with New York City after a police fracas outside a trendy Manhattan nightclub left him with a broken leg in 2015.

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The New York Daily News reported that Sefolosha will receive $4 million for the injury that kept him out of the Hawks run to the Eastern Conference final. He was acquitted of criminal charges and sued the city and five police officers in federal court.

Mike Stewart / Associated Press file

People with autism and other disabilities and their family members plan to rehearse a trip to the airport in Atlanta.

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Organizers say about 100 people are expected to participate in Wednesday's event at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. The Arc, an organization that advocates for people with disabilities, hosts similar events at airports across the United States.

 

Ringo H.W. Chiu / associated press file

Six school districts in Georgia have been recognized as the best for music education.

 

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Three metro Atlanta school districts in Cobb, Fulton and Gwinnett county were among the districts given recognition from the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. Baldwin, Clarke and Putnam school districts also won the distinction.

 

David Goldman / Associated Press

A slow parade of red brake lights illuminated the Atlanta highways Monday morning as motorists inched around the city in the wake of a bridge fire and collapse that shut down one of the main highways.

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Atlanta's mayor had warned motorists they'd face longer commutes Monday, as school buses, parents and workers returned to the roads after spring break.

Elly Yu / WABE

On Sunday afternoon, several Syrian families come to the Clarkston Community Center, bringing food that they’ve prepared for an event that’s aimed to connect refugees with young U.S. veterans.

Children pass out hand-drawn cards, as about a dozen veterans and their families sit with Syrian families they’ve just met and eat the feast that’s been prepared.

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Scott Audette / Associated Press

Otis Nixon, a former Atlanta Braves player who suited up during the team's "worst-to-first" season, is missing.

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Nixon was last seen Saturday morning when the 58-year-old left his house for a golf outing that he never appeared at.

Sunday night, the Woodstock Police Department went to social media asking for help in finding Nixon.

Cassandra Douglas / WABE

Severe storms that tore through the Southeast -- including North Georgia -- caused many travel headaches for people with tickets for Delta Air Lines.

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The Atlanta-based carrier was forced to cancel more than 3,500 flights and delay thousands of others over the past few days after severe storms on Wednesday caused backups at various airports, including Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

David Goldman / Associated Press

Atlanta's mayor warned motorists to prepare for longer travel times on Monday as schools return from spring break and a key stretch of interstate remains closed.

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Many Atlanta area schools were on break this week, temporarily easing fears of fierce gridlock due to a stretch of Interstate 85 collapsing on March 30 after a large fire. But Mayor Kasim Reed said Friday that models predict a 30 percent increase in travel times on Monday as schools resume normal schedules.

BRANDEN CAMP / Associated Press

Delta Air Lines said Friday it has canceled about 3,000 flights this week as it struggles in the aftermath of a storm that hit its big hub airport in Atlanta.

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The thunder storm hit Wednesday, but canceled flights and long lines in Atlanta persisted into Friday. Delta had canceled more than 400 flights by midday Friday, according to tracking service FlightAware.com.

Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter delivers a lecture on the eradication of the Guinea worm, at the House of Lords in London, Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016.
Neil Hall/Pool Photo via AP

Former President Jimmy Carter says he's concerned that the United States' commitment to human rights will continue to deteriorate during President Donald Trump's administration.

 

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Carter's comments came during a lecture Thursday at Emory University.

 

Atlanta Dogwood Festival visitors
Courtesy of the Atlanta Dogwood Festival

One of Atlanta's most enduring events starts today and runs through the weekend.

It's the 81st annual Atlanta Dogwood Festival at Piedmont Park.

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"I don't want to be the one who says, 'Oh, it's got something for people of all ages.' But in this case, it actually does," said Brian Hill, the executive director of the event for the past 10 years.

Seth Wenig / Associated Press

Thabo Sefolosha of the Atlanta Hawks surely suffered when police officers broke his leg arresting him outside a Manhattan nightclub in 2015. He needed surgery and sat out while teammates went deep in the NBA playoffs.

But New York City's decision to settle his wrongful arrest lawsuit this week for $4 million still raised eyebrows. That's more than the city has paid out in some of its most notorious police brutality cases.

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Molly Samuel / WABE

The amount of water flowing down the Chattahoochee River from Georgia into Florida is being reduced. Though it’s been a very rainy week here, the drought is still dragging on, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is beginning drought operations on the river basin.

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