Our network

News

Unemployment climbs in metro Atlanta

Unemployment climbs in metro Atlanta

(WXIA) -- Metro Atlanta's unemployment rate climbed eight-tenths of a point in one month.

May's rate was 7.3 percent, considerably higher than April's 6.5 percent.

In Gwinnett County, the rate was 6.5 percent in May.

Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the spike was mostly due to new graduates entering the workforce. The Atlanta area's labor force grew by about 24,400 in May.

Metro Athens had last month's lowest area jobless rate at 5.7 percent. The Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region's was the highest at 9.8 percent.

Interstate work continues through the weekend

Interstate work continues through the weekend

(WXIA) -- Another weekend, another series of road projects -- that seems to be the summertime theme in metro Atlanta.

The Georgia Department of Transportation said the roadwork that has plagued drivers for the past several weekends will continue through Monday morning.

Among the projects:

Cherokee County
* ROLLING CLOSURE: Nightly sweeping on I-575 in both directions

Cobb County
* Two southbound lanes of I-285 will be closed between Paces Ferry and South Atlanta roads from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. nightly for slab replacement.

Cobb/Fulton counties
* Two lanes in each direction of I-285 will be closed between I-75 and New Northside Drive from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for sign construction.

13-year-old bicyclist hit and killed by cars


GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. -- A 13-year-old boy was killed after being hit by two cars while riding his bicycle in Gwinnett County.

Justin Shaw was struck while trying to turn onto Club Drive from Woodstream Drive in unincorporated Lawrenceville Wednesday afternoon.

Gwinnett County Police Cpl. Edwin Ritter said a preliminary investigation revealed Shaw failed to stop at a stop sign and rolled into the path of a Chevrolet Equinox. The driver braked when she saw Shaw, but could not stop in time to avoid hitting the teen.

The impact of the crash forced Shaw and his bicycle into another lane, where he was hit by a Honda Accord.

Shaw was taken by ambulance to Gwinnett Medical Center and was later airlifted to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston, where he was pronounced dead.

Ritter said police do not expect to file charges in this accident.


Bank robbery suspect shot dead by Gwinnett police

Bank robbery suspect shot dead by Gwinnett police

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. -- A Gwinnett County police officer shot and killed a bank robbery suspect Monday morning.

The suspect was shot shortly after 9 a.m. after reportedly robbing the Wells Fargo at Lawrenceville Highway and Bethesda School Road in unincorporated Lawrenceville.

Gwinnett County Police Cpl. Edwin Ritter said investigators responded to an armed robbery call at the bank. The suspect ran from the Wells Fargo to Bethesda United Methodist Church, about half a mile away, where he was confronted by a police officer in the rear parking lot.

Police said the suspect hit the officer over the head with an "Airsoft gun". The officer fired several shots, hitting the suspect multiple times and killing him. The suspect was identified as 24 year old John Schneider.

The police officer was taken to Gwinnett Medical Center and treated for a cut on his head.

Weekend roadwork to affect I-20, I-285 drivers

Weekend roadwork to affect I-20, I-285 drivers

(WXIA) -- Road projects are scheduled to take place on Interstates 285 and 20 this weekend.

All work is weather permitting, but drivers should still look out for road crews and plan for possible delays.

Among the scheduled projects:

Cobb County
* Intermittent pacing will take place on I-285 at Atlanta Road from 6 a.m. to noon Saturday

Cobb/Fulton counties
* Nightly sign construction will close two lanes in each direction of I-285 between I-75 and New Northside Drive

Douglas County
* Two westbound lanes of I-20 between Bill Arp and Liberty roads will be closed from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. nightly

Fulton County
* Three eastbound lanes of I-285 between Riverside Drive and the Glenwood Connector will be closed nightly

Lawrenceville man charged with beating stepchild to death

Lawrenceville man charged with beating stepchild to death

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. -- Lawrenceville Police have charged a 35-year-old man with fatally beating his stepchild.

The 2-year-old victim, whose name was not released, was found unresponsive in a back bedroom at Bertrand Hounkpatin's home on Jan. 25.

Police said Hounkpatin disciplined the victim shortly before the child was found, and an 11-year-old sibling tried to perform CPR on the baby. The victim was later pronounced dead at Gwinnett Medical Center.

Autopsy results released Tuesday revealed that a pattern of abuse contributed to the child's death, according to police. None of the other children living in Hounkpatin's house showed signs of abuse.

Hounkpatin was charged with felony murder and three counts of cruelty to children. He is being held without bond in the Gwinnett County Detention Center.

Teens represent Ga. in national auto skills competition

Teens represent Ga. in national auto skills competition

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. -- A pair of recent high school graduates may get parents re-thinking their children's future plans.

Jorge Gonzalez and David Chavez have each won $34,000 scholarships because they know how to repair cars. They're also learning skills for jobs currently in demand.

The pair are representing Georgia in the Ford/AAA Auto Skills Competition taking place in Detroit, Michigan this week.

They took automotive classes at Maxwell High School in Gwinnett County and beat nine other Georgia teams to win the state title and scholarships, plus coveted tools for working on vehicles.

The pair are coached by teacher Max Chavez (not related to David), who says the Detroit competition involves each team trying to diagnose and repair vehicle pre-set with problems.

"They'll (contest organizers) set faults on the car so it would be simulating the customer showing up at a repair shop," said Max Chavez.