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Early Retirement Saves Money, Creates Budget Crunch at Dekalb Jail

DEKALB, Co.-- An effort to save money in Dekalb County has put the Sheriff in a budget and manpower challenge at the jail.

Sheriff Thomas Brown lost 89 employees when early retirement was offered by Dekalb County as a cost saving measure. Most of those employees worked at the Dekalb County jail. The sheriff says as he has struggles to find qualified entry-level replacements, he's working his remaining detention officers overtime to maintain order at the jail.

"We have to have enough people at the jail to operate it safely," said Sheriff Brown. "We been having regularly work people overtime, and that's pushed against a depressed budget I have."

Sheriff Brown said he's already spent a million dollars beyond his overtime budget. He's been using money from other areas of his budget to keep the jail fully staffed.

$25K Reward Offered in Metro Area Bank Robberies

NORCROSS, GA -- The FBI is looking for the public's help in tracking down two armed robbers and a driver who held up a Chase Bank branch in Norcross Thursday afternoon.

According to an FBI release, the gunmen entered the Chase Bank branch at 1250 Tech Drive in Norcross at about 12:40 p.m., and forced customers to lie on the floor. The pair did not get any bank money according to the release. They fled in a gold Kia Spectra, which police found in an area behind the bank. The car had been reported stolen in DeKalb County on Wednesday.

The first robber was described as a black male, 20-to-30 years old, 5-foot-8 to 5-foot-10 inches in height; the second was a black male, 20-to-25 years in age and 6 feet tall. The driver of the getaway car was also described as a black male.

FBI officilas said the robbery was similar to several other Metro Atlanta robberies, including:

Democratic Party of Georgia hosts Day of Action

On Saturday Oct. 2nd at 1 p.m. the Democratic Party of Georgia will host a statewide open house at 11 of their field offices. This is our Statewide Day of Action.   We invite everyone who cares about the future of Georgia to attend this event.  Below is a list of the locations:

Mega Parenting Event This Weekend

ATLANTA -- One of America's leading parenting experts is coming to Atlanta this weekend for three days of events aimed at helping parents raise principled, purposeful kids in today's complex world.

John Rosemond, whose nationally-syndicated column appears weekly in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, will join with Connect With Kids founder Stacey Dewitt for the program at South Forsyth High School on Saturday, October 2, Marist School on Sunday, October 3, and Mount Paran Christian School on Monday, October 4.

Rosemond has written 14 books on parenting.  DeWitt is an attorney, an award-winning journalist, and mom who regularly appears as a parenting expert on 11Alive News and on other news outlets nationwide.

The events at South Forsyth High and Marist School cost $20 per person or $35 per couple.  The Mount Paran event costs $12 per person.

Earthquake Survivor Gets A New Arm


ATLANTA -- A life-changing trip to Atlanta is coming to an end soon for an earthquake survivor from Haiti.

Guerline Charles will return next week with a new arm and a full heart.

"I will go with everyone here in my heart," Charles said through her friend and interpreter Rachel Isons, who is also from Haiti. "I will not forget them. I will not forget the amazing love." 

Charles arrived in Atlanta in May to heal from the devastating earthquake that rocked her homeland.

When it hit in January, she spent two days trapped in the rubble of a school building with her arm crushed by concrete. She was the only survivor in her classroom.

Doctors decided there was no way to save her arm without risking her life.

"The minute they told me they had to amputate, yes, I did grieve and cry," she said. "Then I decided I need to live."

CEO Ellis hosts Family Dinner for Residents

In commemoration of Family Day, A Day to Eat Dinner with Your Children, DeKalb County Chief Executive Officer Burrell Ellis and other county officials served dinner and ate with community families yesterday at Redan Recreation Center, 1839 Phillips Rd. in Lithonia.  

The event gave parents the opportunity to spend quality time with young children and teens at the county’s newest family-centered facility.

Is Texting-While-Driving Ban Making an Impact?

ATLANTA -- Early data from Georgia, and the most recent national study, suggest texting bans aren't as effective as most wish they were.

The numbers show a very heated law off to a very slow start.

READ: Highway Loss Data Institute Findings

In Georgia, Governor Sonny Perdue signed a texting-while-driving ban into law earlier this year; it went into effect in July and started getting enforced in August.

"Since then, we have issued 30 citations," said Trooper 1st Class Carlos Searcy of the Georgia State Patrol.

That's less than one per day.