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Woman sentenced for running unlicensed care home

Woman sentenced for running unlicensed care home

MARIETTA, Ga. -- A Cobb County woman pleaded guilty Thursday to operating an unlicensed care center out of a Marietta house.

Raequel Alita Penny admitted she kept six disabled and/or elderly women in the basement of the house on Laurel Springs Lane, and deprived the people in her care of food, medicine and other basic necessities.

Penny was convicted of 47 charges, including false imprisonment, racketeering, theft and deprivation. A Cobb County judge sentenced her to 20 years -- 10 in custody and 10 on probation.

Happy 4th of July: No weekend road projects!

Happy 4th of July: No weekend road projects!

(WXIA) -- The Georgia Department of Transportation will celebrate the July 4 holiday by taking a break from all road projects.

The weekend construction that has plagued drivers for weeks will be temporarily halted at noon on Thursday.

However, GDOT expects considerable delays in certain areas, especially on Friday. Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to run in or watch the 2014 AJC Peachtree Road Race, which will close several roads in Buckhead and Midtown. Fireworks displays and other Independence Day celebrations will also affect commuters Friday night.

An international Jehovah's Witnesses convention will be held at the Georgia Dome this weekend; 34,000 people from 14 countries will attend. GDOT said this event may also have an impact on traffic in the area.

Former office manager gets 30 years for racketeering

Former office manager gets 30 years for racketeering

COBB COUNTY, Ga. -- A former officer manager pleaded guilty Monday to stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from her Marietta employer.

A Cobb County judge sentenced 45-year-old Sharron Yvonne Rice to 30 years, with eight to serve in custody. She must also pay $803,000 in restitution.

Prosecutors said that between 2005 and 2012, Rice forged her manager's signature on more than 800 checks and deposited them into shell companies' bank accounts. She then pocketed the money.

Rice was charged with three counts of violating Georgia's Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. A trial for her co-defendant, Robert Whaley, will begin next week.

Sinkhole blocks one lane on Austell Road

MARIETTA, Ga. -- Cobb County officials said crews from Cobb County Water were working to cover a sinkhole that developed Monday afternoon on Austell Road.

The 10-foot deep sinkhole developed in the right lane of northbound Austell Road near Kurt Drive. Cobb Water crews were planning to place a metal plate over the hole in order to keep rush hour traffic moving. Officials said the hole is expected to be filled a bit later.

The Cobb County Department of Transportation says the one northbound lane is blocked, and that repairs are expected to take about 48 hours.

Weekend traffic: Roadwork on I-20, cyclists on Ga. 400

Weekend traffic: Roadwork on I-20, cyclists on Ga. 400

(WXIA) -- It will be another difficult weekend for drivers on Interstates 20 and 285.

Weather may provide a little relief, as road crews do not work during thunderstorms. See the weekend forecast.

But drivers should still use caution when traveling through these areas:

Clayton County
* One northbound right lane of I-675 will be closed between Highway 138 and I-285 from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. nightly for sweeping.

Cobb County
* Two southbound right lanes of I-285 will be closed between Paces Ferry Road and South Cobb Drive from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for slab replacement and repair.
* One westbound right lane of I-285 will be closed at Rottenwood Creek from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. Saturday for concrete pouring.

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 Cobb County, the rate was 6.8 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.

Man arrested after fatal Marietta shooting

MARIETTA, Ga. – Marietta Police identified a 19-year-old man killed in a shooting at the Columns at Bentley Manor Apartments Tuesday afternoon. A second man was arrested in connection with the shooting.

Police said they responded to the apartment complex at about 2:30 p.m., after receiving a report of a person down. When officers arrived, they discovered the victim, Daryus Johnson of Marietta, unconscious on the floor of the apartment, suffering from a gunshot wound. He was transported to Kennestone Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Investigators said they discovered that Johnson and 19-year-old Elyjah Marrow were in the apartment. They said Marrow was recklessly handling a handgun, which discharged accidentally, injuring Johnson.