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Atlanta-area unemployment drops to 7.3 percent

Atlanta-area unemployment drops to 7.3 percent

(WXIA) -- Metro Atlanta's unemployment rate fell seven-tenths of a point in September.

Last month's rate was 7.3 percent, well below August's 8.0 percent. The unemployment rate was 7.6 percent in September 2013.

DeKalb County's unemployment rate was 7.7 percent in September.

Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said there were nearly 20,000 fewer unemployed people in Atlanta last month, and companies reported fewer layoffs. Industries that added jobs in September include government; education and health services; construction; and trade and transportation.

Metro Athens had Georgia's lowest unemployment rate in September, at 5.7 percent. The Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region had the highest, at 9.5 percent.

Weekend roadwork: The I-285 debacle continues

Weekend roadwork: The I-285 debacle continues

(WXIA) -- It's going to be another messy weekend on metro Atlanta's highways.

The Georgia Department of Transportation encourages drivers to stay off Interstates 20 and 285 if they can.

As always, all work is weather permitting.

Scheduled construction projects include:

Bartow County
* 1 northbound lane of I-75 will be closed between two miles north of Glade Road and one mile south of Allatoona Road from 9 p.m. Friday to 1 a.m. Saturday for bridge maintenance.
* 1 northbound lane of I-75 will be closed between two miles north of Glade Road and one mile south of Allatoona Road from 7 a.m. Saturday to 5 p.m. Sunday for bridge maintenance.

Cobb County
* 1 lane of the I-75 southbound exit ramp to I-285 west will be closed from 9 p.m. Saturday to 7 a.m. Sunday for work on the Northwest Corridor Express Lanes project.

29-year-old DeKalb County woman missing

29-year-old DeKalb County woman missing

CHAMBLEE, Ga. -- Chamblee police are asking the public for help finding a 29-year-old woman.

Brandi E. Smith was last seen Sept. 28 and was reported missing by her mother on Oct. 1. She was being treated at Peachford Hospital in DeKalb County when she disappeared.

Smith is white, 5 feet 3 inches tall and 90 pounds, with brown eyes and dark-colored hair. She has tattoos on the inside of one wrist and a floral tattoo on her back.

The missing woman takes medication for seizures and may also use heroin.

Chamblee police received an unconfirmed tip that Smith may be with two black men, and one of those men assaulted her in a liquor store's parking lot on Oct. 11.

Anyone who sees Brandi Smith or has information about his disappeared is asked to call Chamblee Police Capt. Ernesto Ford at 770-986-5008.

True school spirit at Dunwoody's Homecoming


DUNWOODY, Ga. (WXIA) – At the Dunwoody High School homecoming Friday night, students showed true school spirit during halftime.

This year's Dunwoody High School senior homecoming court -- ten candidates for Homecoming Queen and ten candidates for King -- beamed like the sun under the Friday night lights.

That number included two special needs students their fellow seniors nominated: Hannah Keen, who has Down's syndrome, escorted by her big brother D.R.; and Gus Ashbury. He's a student with autism, escorted by his mother, Mamie.

It was two weeks ago when the whole school -- 1,200 DHS students -- voted for Queen and King, choosing from among all 20 candidates on the ballots.

The results were announced at halftime. It turns out the voting was not even close.

Weekend roadwork: Lots of projects on the schedule

Weekend roadwork: Lots of projects on the schedule

(WXIA) -- A major project on a heavily traveled interchange is bound to cause some headaches for Atlanta-area drivers this weekend.

It's just one of several scheduled construction sessions throughout the area. All work is weather permitting.

Crews will be hard at work on the Kennedy Interchange in Cobb County much of the weekend. The Kennedy Interchange is where Interstate 75 meets Interstate 285 in the Cumberland area.

The Georgia Department of Transportation said sign installation will require multiple lane closures on the Outer Loop of I-285 just before the exit ramp to Cobb Parkway and I-75 north. Two right lanes will close at 9 a.m. Saturday; that will expand to three lanes between 11 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. Sunday. Outer Loop traffic will also be paced in the area beginning at around 2 a.m. Sunday.

Other weekend road projects include:

Atlanta man committed to feeding hungry


David Skoke is on a mission to feed the hungry in Atlanta.

The part-time actor drives around the city in a brightly painted minivan twice a week picking up extra unsold produce from four Whole Foods Market locations. "Whole Foods pulls food from the shelves three days before its expiration date, so it still has three good days left and probably more," he said.

Skoke said he averages about three tons of food per month. His delivers the fresh fruits and vegetables to five area soup kitchens, homeless shelters and food pantries. On a recent Wednesday he delivered a shipment to Saint Patrick's Episcopal Church in Dunwoody, which runs a Free Food Store and a café for the needy.

Police: Server stole customers' credit card numbers

Police: Server stole customers' credit card numbers

DUNWOODY, Ga. -- A Forest Park woman has been charged with stealing credit card information while working as a server in Dunwoody.

Nicey Marie Joseph, 26, is being held in the DeKalb County Jail on several charges, including three counts of financial transaction card fraud, two counts of identity fraud and two counts of elder exploitation.

Police said Joseph began working at an Olive Garden restaurant on Ashford Dunwoody Road in June 2014. She is accused of connecting a mobile card reader to her smartphone, then using it to steal customers' credit card numbers when they paid for their meals. Dunwoody Police spokesman Tim Fecht said in at least three cases, Joseph stole more than $5,000 from customers.

Joseph also faces possible charges for doing the same thing to customers at a restaurant in Jacksonville, Fla.