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Local News

    Jimmy John’s says it has fired several employees who posted video of them making a noose out of bread dough at a Georgia location. The video, which appeared to be posted on Snapchat of the workers at the restaurant in Woodstock, shows one employee draping the bread dough noose over the neck of another and yanking it. The other workers watch and laugh. A “Happy 4th of July” banner appears across the bottom of the video. The workers who are shown in the video appear to be white. On Monday, Jimmy John’s posted a statement on social media saying the franchise has “terminated” the employees involved. “We have zero tolerance for racism or discrimination in any form. The franchisee has taken immediate action and the employees have been terminated. The actions seen in this video are completely unacceptable and do not represent the Jimmy John’s brand,” the statement read. We have zero tolerance for racism or discrimination in any form. The franchisee has taken immediate action and the employees have been terminated. The actions seen in this video are completely unacceptable and do not represent the Jimmy John's brand.— Jimmy John's (@jimmyjohns) July 5, 2020 Many people sent copies of the video to Channel 2 Action News. Customers threatened to boycott the sandwich shop over the incident, calling the video hateful and racist, according to the Associated Press. Jimmy John’s was founded in Illinois and has over 2,800 locations in the U.S. There are dozens of locations in Georgia. Information from the Associated Press was used in this report
  • Emergency crews are at the scene in a DeKalb County neighborhood where a tree came crashing down overnight. Decatur Assistant Fire Chief Ninetta Violante told Channel 2 Action News that the tree fell onto two homes on Drexel Avenue early Tuesday morning. One house had four people inside; two men, two women and two dogs. The tree hit the second story of the house and trapped a teenager in his bedroom while he was asleep. The fire chief says debris was up to his neck The tree blocked the door, and no one could get out of the house. They all eventually got out without injuries but the house won't be able to be lived in. The second house had a woman living inside. She and her dog were trapped, but rescued. That house is safe to occupy. The tree also damaged four cars and majority of the homes on the road are still without power. “Because we don’t know how the branches fell into the home, we don’t know if we’ll have access to get to them or if the person is severely injured and we’re going to need more help as we get in there. So you go in there hoping for the best always and when the best happens. It makes it for a good day,” said DeKalb County Fire spokesperson Vera Morrison. We spoke to one neighbor, who said one of the homes hit, it was the second time it’s happened in three years. And the family was preparing to move next week. The sun is up so we’re getting a closer look at the damage here in Drexel Ave in Decatur and it’s a mess! The fire chief said it’s going to take hours to clean this up. https://t.co/WQrJdl7y1X pic.twitter.com/ZU9C391hqd — Kristen Holloway (@KHollowayWSB) July 7, 2020
  • You’ll want to have an umbrella handy this afternoon and evening. Severe Weather Team 2 has been tracking rain all morning and the showers will be around this afternoon. Storms could be possible too. We’re tracking the showers LIVE throughout the day on Channel 2 Action News [ DOWNLOAD: WSB-TV’s Weather App for storm alerts in your neighborhood ] Here’s what you need to know: Scattered showers are moving across parts of north Georgia The wettest weather will be Atlanta eastward An area of low pressure is the cause of all of the wet weather The low over us this morning will have the potential for some tropical development once it reaches the Outer Banks of NC in a couple of days...— Brian Monahan, WSB (@BMonahanWSB) July 7, 2020
  • Business owners in the Sweet Auburn area are calling for new measures to be put into place to help reduce violence in the neighborhood. Over the Fourth of July weekend, Atlanta police responded to several shootings in the community, including one on Auburn Avenue and Edgewood. Police said 14 people were shot and two people later died. Video of the shooting quickly made its way around social media. “There’s people getting killed. And when we’re losing lives in our community, we have to come together and address that concern,” Jerome Edmundson said. On Monday, Channel 2′s Audrey Washington met with Edmundson and other business owners and neighbors in the Sweet Auburn area. They want safety changes put in place immediately starting with a crackdown on the car clubs that flood the community at night. “They’re drawing massive crowds and those crowds get out of control. Then you have the 14 shootings that we had this weekend,” Edmundson said. “It’s total lawlessness in this area and we don’t know what to do.” TRENDING STORIES Governor declares State of Emergency, authorizes 1,000 National Guard troops to Atlanta Atlanta interim police chief says this weekend was ‘the most violent (he can) recall’ Street racers block major midtown Atlanta road to perform donuts Ryan Buchanan is the general manager at Noni’s on Edgewood. He said the car clubs come into the community and create congestion points. “We want a pedestrian zone that’s free of cars,” Buchanan said. “When you have cars coming though, that brings cruising, people selling stuff out the trucks of their cars and crowds forming that are stagnate and that leads to fights and gunshots.” Channel 2′s Matt Johnson spoke with Grant Henry, who owns Church Bar on Edgewood Avenue. Henry says he loves the vibrant and diverse community and it broke his heart to hear about the recent deaths. “There needs to be some emergency action,” he said. Henry told Johnson fellow business owners have been pleading with the city for six years to make the area a pedestrian only zone. “Let the people be on the street. Let it be open to bicycles and people, instead of zooming cars that are breaking the law,” he said. Here are some of the videos that show some of the gun violence in the Sweet Auburn area lately. Sunday, 14 people were shot on Auburn Ave. Businesses on Edgewood say they want the area pedestrian only, to get rid of car clubs that come on weekends. https://t.co/hW5WO0inFE pic.twitter.com/blUUlwmJSI — Matt Johnson (@MattWSB) July 7, 2020 Atlanta police announced last Thursday they would be addressing the issues in Sweet Auburn specifically. But business owners said there needs to be a new plan. “Were begging the city and the mayor and the chief to help us. We wont survive with what’s going,” Edmundson said. At Church Bar, Henry said the violence has reached a point where he says he needs to speak up and keep his beloved business shut down. “We aren’t going to open on Edgewood Avenue until you’re safe,” he said. A city spokesperson told Johnson that making the area pedestrian only would require legislation from the city council. Business owners said they are in close contact with several councilmembers and plan to meet with city leaders to get a plan in place as soon as possible.
  • The owner of a Roswell bar is defending his decision to put on a three-day music festival during the pandemic, despite concerns from neighbors and some musicians who played at the event. Rock N’ Taco advertised the tribute band festival on social media, and it included several different bands playing Friday, Saturday and Sunday night. The event was held in a parking lot off Canton Street. “(I’m) confused as to why anyone would think that was a good idea,” neighbor Kelly Griffith told Channel 2′s Mike Petchenik Monday. “That’s a ‘super-spreading’ event…You’re singing to an audience of a few hundred people and nobody is wearing masks.” Multiple neighbors reached out to Petchenik over the weekend with similar concerns. “Those people who are there may think they’re invincible, but they take it to people who are not,” Griffith said of the virus. TRENDING STORIES Atlanta mayor says she tested positive for COVID-19 Governor declares State of Emergency, authorizes 1,000 National Guard troops to Atlanta Dragon Con cancels 2020 event because of coronavirus pandemic Roswell city spokesperson, Julie Brechbill, told Petchenik the city issued the bar a special event and catering permit in return for promises that organizers would provide masks and hand sanitizer for everyone attending, would limit capacity to ensure proper social distancing, and do temperature checks for attendees. “We spent $3,500 on disposable masks,” owner John Michael Brunetti told Petchenik. “I can’t force people to put it on. You’re a grown adult.” Brunetti told Petchenik he also took steps to limit capacity in the parking lot to around 360 people, even though the lot held about three times as many people, and he said they took steps to remind people to distance and wear masks. “COVID-19 is like a bully and he moved into the house next door,” Brunetti said. “I can sit in my house the rest of my life or I can take the right precautions and live my life.” Brechbill said the city gave Brunetti a warning Friday night about the crowd size and then reminded him Saturday morning about the importance of social distancing, but she said future checks showed the event in compliance with the Governor’s order. Brecbhill said it would have taken four warnings before the city could have stepped in to stop the event. “We weren’t shut down,” Brunetti said. Video posted on Facebook shows a “Prince” tribute band playing to what appears to be a full house, with many patrons standing inches apart without masks on. Brunetti said pictures he took from the event showing different vantage points shows the crowd more spread out. Sheri Merriam and her friends and family attended a concert Sunday night and told Petchenik they felt safe. “When we walked in we had to have our temperature taken,” she said. “They gave us masks, they gave us wristbands.” Merriam said while some visitors didn’t have masks on, she felt she was able to distance herself enough to feel safe. “I thought they did a great job of making sure everyone was safe. People are adults. You can get people a mask, but you can’t make them wear it,” she said. Petchenik also received an e-mail from a musician who said she performed at the event. “There was no social distancing at all,” Mekenzie Jackson wrote. “Not a single person was wearing a mask. The bands had to share all public spaces with the audience and there was no security preventing audience members from coming up and talking very closely to us.” Jackson said she and her bandmates are now concerned for their health. “As a band, when we accepted this show we were promised certain things and that is the reason we took the risk,” she wrote. “We didn’t think it would be handled as carelessly as it was this past weekend. Now every single band member is concerned they have contracted the virus.” Petchenik got Brunetti’s reaction to Jackson’s comment: “I am still completely shocked at the response from Rumors lead singer, MeKenzie Kathryn. The only thing I can think of is that she is also catching hell for playing this weekend so she is trying to distance herself from the event. There is a 10x10 green room that the bands can use, but there has never been a time where the staff has used it for anything. We had a portable restroom 20′ from the stage, so unless she is too good to use that restroom there should have been no need for her to walk through the crowd to go the restroom inside the building. The stage had its own private gate and the artist could choose to stand behind the stage and not interact with anyone…She had no problem showing up, playing, accepting our $7,000 check, or her and her bandmates thanking me 3 separate times for allowing them to play because they haven’t played in months. At no point did she speak to anyone or make an announcement voicing any of her concerns about the festival or her feeling uncomfortable.”

News

  • Proms may have been canceled or delayed because of the coronavirus, but that did not stop creative teens from putting together their formal wear all made of duct tape. One gown stands out. Peyton Manker made a coronavirus-themed gown with rolls and rolls of the fix-it tape. She created images of people running from the virus to illustrate how the world tried to avoid it. She also honors those who are on the front lines, including health care workers and police, CNN reported. And what is a gown without accessories? Manker put together a coronavirus-shaped purse and mask that reads “flatten the curve,” CNN reported. Voting is still open in Duck Brand Duct Tape’s “Stuck at Prom” scholarship contest. To vote and to see Manker’s competition, click here. Winners for each category -- dress or tux -- will be awarded $10,000 each. The runners-up will get $500 and a prize pack.
  • Former President Jimmy Carter and first lady Rosalynn Carter, the longest-married presidential couple in U.S. history, celebrated their 74th wedding anniversary on Tuesday. Jimmy Carter, 95, met then-Rosalynn Smith, 92, though his younger sister, Ruth, who was childhood friends with Rosalynn. They began dating in 1945 while Jimmy Carter was home from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. After their first date, Jimmy Carter told his mother that Rosalynn was the woman he was going to marry. The couple exchanged vows July 7, 1946, in their hometown of Plains, Georgia. Since then, they've lived in the Georgia Governor's Mansion and the White House. Together they've raised four children. In 1982, the Carters founded the Carter Center, an organization aimed at resolving issues around human rights and democracy. Their work earned the couple a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1999. Then-President Bill Clinton said the couple has “done more good things for more people in more places than any other couple on Earth.” On his 75th birthday in 1999, Jimmy Carter said the most important decision he ever made in his life was “Marrying Rosalynn.”
  • If you see a large white dot in the sky, it is likely not an alien UFOs or even a weather balloon. Instead, it could be a large balloon that is the key to bringing internet access to remote areas. Google and its Alphabet company’s Loon division, are sending high-altitude balloons 12 miles into the sky to provide a network of internet services. The system has been in the testing phase in across the globe. On Monday, balloons were seen over Virginia and North Carolina after being tracked from Canada, WDBJ reported. The communication balloons were also sent up into the stratosphere to provide 4G LTE network connections to Kenya, The New York Times reported. Loon launched 35 balloons over the past few months to prepare for the Kenyan launch, the Times reported. This isn’t the first time the balloons were used to help facilitate communication. They were launched when Hurricane Maria destroyed cell towers in Puerto Rico in 2017. Until recently, however, they have only been used in emergency situations, according to the Times. They float on the air currents above the earth and allow people to have remote contact with family members, doctors and officials during the coronavirus pandemic, according to Tech Crunch.
  • Two different stolen vehicle cases were solved at the same time after a police pursuit in Newberg, Oregon over the weekend. Suspect Randy Lee Cooper was driving a stolen Toyota Land Cruiser Sunday morning when police spotted him in downtown Newberg. Cooper fled in the Toyota when police attempted to stop him. In an attempt to elude police officers, Cooper crashed into a Buick Regal driven by Kristin Nicole Begue, according to KATU. Police took Cooper into custody and discovered that the vehicle he crashed into had been reported stolen three weeks earlier. Begue was arrested for driving under the influence and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, according to KOIN. Cooper was eventually charged with third-degree assault, attempting to elude a police officer, reckless driving and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. No one was injured in the incident.
  • The doughnut chain formally known as Dunkin’ Donuts is parting ways with the gas station chain Speedway. In a statement released to the “Today” show, the company said it close the limited menu Dunkin’ locations at the gas stations by the end of the year. “By exiting these sites, we are confident we will be better positioned to serve these trade areas with Dunkin’s newest Next Generation restaurant design that offers a broader menu and modern experience. We also remain committed to growing our presence in gas and convenience locations, as well as other non-traditional locations, including airports, universities, travel plazas and military installations,” Kate Jaspon, Dunkin’s chief financial officer, told “TODAY.” Dunkin’ relabeled itself in 2018 in an effort to focus on coffee and tea. Beverages make up to 60% of the company’s sales.
  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday that officials are considering a ban of popular short-video app TikTok and other Chinese social media apps due to national security concerns. “I don’t want to get out in front of the president, but it’s something we’re looking at,” the nation’s top diplomat said Monday on Fox News. He added that a person should only download TikTok “if you want your private information in the hands of the Chinese Communist Party.” Both Republican and Democratic lawmakers in the U.S. have expressed concern over the national security risk posed by the rising popularity of Chinese-owned social media platforms. In a letter sent in October to then-acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire, Sens. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., and Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., urged officials to review the threat posed by TikTok, noting it had been downloaded more than 110 million times in the U.S. alone. 'China's vague patchwork of intelligence, national security, and cybersecurity laws compel Chinese companies to support and cooperate with intelligence work controlled by the Chinese Communist Party,' Cotton and Schumer wrote in the letter. In a statement obtained by Reuters, TikTok officials denied ever having provided user data to the Chinese government. 'We have no higher priority than promoting a safe and secure app experience for our users,' the statement said. 'We have never provided user data to the Chinese government, nor would we do so if asked.' Pompeo’s comments came one day after India banned TikTok, operated by Beijing-based internet firm Bytedance, and 58 other Chinese-owned apps amid a border dispute between the two countries. The ban was largely symbolic since the apps can’t be automatically erased from devices where they’ve already been downloaded. TikTok officials have previously said that the company operates separately from ByteDance and that its data centers are located outside of China, meaning their data is not subject to Chinese law, according to CNN. Company officials told the news network that TikTok keeps data for U.S. users in the United States and that national security concerns centered around the company are “unfounded.” The Associated Press contributed to this report.