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Judge declares mistrial in Burrell Ellis trial


DECATUR, Ga. -- A DeKalb County judge declared a mistrial in the corruption trial of suspended DeKalb County CEO Burrell Ellis after the jury could not come to a unanimous decision.

Judge Courtney Johnson issued an Allen charge Monday to jurors. An Allen charge, also known as a "dynamite charge," is a final legal mandate to the jurors to reach a verdict.

Still, jurors were unable to come to a unanimous decision after 11 days of deliberating. The jury sent several notes to the judge explaining their troubles in coming to a conclusion on the 13 counts.

Acuity Brands expansion to add 700 jobs in metro Atlanta


(ATLANTA BUSINESS CHRONICLE) -- Acuity Brands Inc. will add 700 jobs over the next five years at locations in DeKalb and Rockdale counties.

The Atlanta-based lighting products company will retrofit an existing 167,000-square-foot building in Decatur, Ga., to become its new state-of-the-art Engineering and Technology Center.

The $11 million project will begin immediately with completion scheduled for mid-2015.In Conyers, Ga., beginning later this year and over the next several years, Acuity Brands will make spend $5 million to redesign and retrofit the four main buildings on its campus to include open workspace design, new infrastructure, enabling technologies and new furnishings.

Acuity recently reported its profit rose 38 percent to $175.8 million in fiscal 2014.

Police: Suspects in double murder connected to other deaths


FULTON COUNTY, Ga. -- Investigators have painted a disturbing pattern of violence in connection with two men arrested for kidnapping and killing a pregnant DeKalb County woman and her boyfriend last August.

Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard said on Friday that Brianna Brooks and Jeronta Brown were just two of Andre Gay and Richard "Fathead" Wilson's victims.

RELATED | DeKalb County couple kidnapped, killed

Howard says both men are responsible for at least seven deaths since 1990, one of which was unsolved.

Ellis jury deliberation carries into next week


DECATUR, Ga. (WXIA) -- Deliberations in the Burrell Ellis corruption trial will carry into next week.

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On Friday, jurors wrapped up day nine without reaching a decision on whether former DeKalb County CEO Ellis broke the law.

The district attorney wants the judge to survey the jury to determine where they stand at this point.

They have yet to reach an agreement on any of the charges, but the judge did put her foot down on one request from the jury – denying their request to go home early on Friday.

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.

Jurors in Burrell Ellis trial send another warning note


DECATUR, Ga. -- Another note, another sign the Burrell Ellis corruption trial may end with a hung jury.

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Within 30 minutes of arriving to court on Wednesday morning, jurors sent a note to the Judge Courtney Johnson.

"After thorough review of all evidence, having several talks, discussions and debates and trying a few different strategies, we the jury are unable to come to a unanimous conclusion in the matter of state versus W. Burrell Ellis Jr on all counts," said Johnson, reading the note to attorneys.

Jury tells judge no unanimous verdict in Ex-DeKalb CEO trial


DECATUR, Ga. -- A DeKalb County jury told a judge Wednesday that they were unable to reach a unanimous verdict in the trial of former CEO Burrell Ellis.

The note the jury gave the judge read: After thorough review of all evidence, having several talks, discussions and debates and trying a few different strategies, we the jury are unable to come to a unanimous conclusion in the matter of state versus W. Burrell Ellis Jr on all counts.

The judge told the jury to keep trying to reach a verdict.