Review Category : National News

Main Interstate in Atlanta Cleared After Bomb Scare

iStock/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) — A suspicious package report closed a major highway in Atlanta on Monday, causing extreme traffic ahead of the evening rush hour.

The Georgia Department of Transportation reported that 14th Street closed between Techwood Dr. and West Peachtree St. and I-75/85 closed north and southbound at 14th Street. The ramps to 14th from I-75/85 in both directions were also closed.

All lanes of travel were reopened later in the afternoon on Monday and the scene was “rendered all clear,” Atlanta police told ABC News.

They’re turning folks around and sending them off the highway. @Atlanta_Traffic pic.twitter.com/ld7F8wPjWv

— Erika (@ErikaBirg) February 2, 2015

People are turning around, backing up, doing whatever they can to get off the highway #atltraffic pic.twitter.com/EISo2PVYmX

— Erika (@ErikaBirg) February 2, 2015

The highway will remain closed as the investigation continues, the Atlanta police reported.

This isn’t the first time severe traffic has struck Atlanta.

One year ago, a freak snowstorm turned the city’s roads into sheets of ice and left thousands of drivers stranded. A driver trying to get to the airport told ABC News he traveled one mile in eight hours.

This driver said he spent 19 hours on the road:

One year ago today… @audreybeckman and I spent 19 hours stuck on the highway. #Atlanta #snowmageddon2014 pic.twitter.com/2TF1UHMrXy

— Kyle Beckman (@kobeckman) January 29, 2015

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Main Interstate in Atlanta Cleared After Bomb Scare

iStock/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) — A suspicious package report closed a major highway in Atlanta on Monday, causing extreme traffic ahead of the evening rush hour.

The Georgia Department of Transportation reported that 14th Street closed between Techwood Dr. and West Peachtree St. and I-75/85 closed north and southbound at 14th Street. The ramps to 14th from I-75/85 in both directions were also closed.

All lanes of travel were reopened later in the afternoon on Monday and the scene was “rendered all clear,” Atlanta police told ABC News.

They’re turning folks around and sending them off the highway. @Atlanta_Traffic pic.twitter.com/ld7F8wPjWv

— Erika (@ErikaBirg) February 2, 2015

People are turning around, backing up, doing whatever they can to get off the highway #atltraffic pic.twitter.com/EISo2PVYmX

— Erika (@ErikaBirg) February 2, 2015

The highway will remain closed as the investigation continues, the Atlanta police reported.

This isn’t the first time severe traffic has struck Atlanta.

One year ago, a freak snowstorm turned the city’s roads into sheets of ice and left thousands of drivers stranded. A driver trying to get to the airport told ABC News he traveled one mile in eight hours.

This driver said he spent 19 hours on the road:

One year ago today… @audreybeckman and I spent 19 hours stuck on the highway. #Atlanta #snowmageddon2014 pic.twitter.com/2TF1UHMrXy

— Kyle Beckman (@kobeckman) January 29, 2015

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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UNC Students Demand Building Named for KKK Leader Be Renamed

WTVD-TV(CHAPEL HILL, N.C.) — Students at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill are demanding that the university rename a building named after a leader of the Klu Klux Klan.

The rally on Monday outside Saunders Hall featured students wearing nooses around their necks and holding signs that read, “This is what Saunders would do to me,” according to a report by ABC News affiliate WTVD-TV.

Some historians argue former North Carolina Secretary of State William Saunders’ involvement in the Klu Klux Klan in the 1800s isn’t confirmed, but student Matt Taylor and other protesters have convinced the University Board of Trustees to review the matter.

“If UNC is as inclusive as it says it is, if it promotes diversity like it wants to, it needs to make us feel welcome as students while we’re here, not just give the appearance,” Taylor told WTVD-TV.

However, former UNC Chancellor James Moeser told the television station that the founders of the university were slave owners and are celebrated for their work towards the school.

“I don’t think the facts are all in about Saunders,” said Moeser. “We don’t really know whether he was a Klu Klux Klan. But let’s assume he was. Where do we draw the line?”

Students want the university to rename the building after African-American author Zora Neale Hurston, best known for her novel Their Eyes Were Watching God.

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UNC Students Demand Building Named for KKK Leader Be Renamed

WTVD-TV(CHAPEL HILL, N.C.) — Students at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill are demanding that the university rename a building named after a leader of the Klu Klux Klan.

The rally on Monday outside Saunders Hall featured students wearing nooses around their necks and holding signs that read, “This is what Saunders would do to me,” according to a report by ABC News affiliate WTVD-TV.

Some historians argue former North Carolina Secretary of State William Saunders’ involvement in the Klu Klux Klan in the 1800s isn’t confirmed, but student Matt Taylor and other protesters have convinced the University Board of Trustees to review the matter.

“If UNC is as inclusive as it says it is, if it promotes diversity like it wants to, it needs to make us feel welcome as students while we’re here, not just give the appearance,” Taylor told WTVD-TV.

However, former UNC Chancellor James Moeser told the television station that the founders of the university were slave owners and are celebrated for their work towards the school.

“I don’t think the facts are all in about Saunders,” said Moeser. “We don’t really know whether he was a Klu Klux Klan. But let’s assume he was. Where do we draw the line?”

Students want the university to rename the building after African-American author Zora Neale Hurston, best known for her novel Their Eyes Were Watching God.

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Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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What Tom Brady Had to Say About Deflate-Gate After Super Bowl

Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images(PHOENIX) — The New England Patriots overcame a season of “adversity,” quarterback Tom Brady said, before becoming Super Bowl champions.

Brady, 37, who won the game’s MVP Award, said at a press conference Monday that the team “dealt with a lot of adversity from the start of the year all the way through the end.”

But when asked specifically about one adversity — the accusations that the Patriots used under-inflated footballs in the AFC Championship game — Brady replied, “We’ve just been focusing on our game. I’m sure all that stuff will take care of itself.”

“It was a great accomplishment by our team last night,” Brady added. “We should all be proud. We get to go to a parade and celebrate. We haven’t had one of those in a long time.”

Brady has already celebrated three Super Bowl wins with the Patriots: in 2002, 2004 and 2005. But he said Monday, “I was a young kid when we won those first three.”

Brady, who called football “a game of emotion,” was also MVP in 2002 and 2004.

“So much of what has made our team special is the discipline, hard work,” Brady said. “Expectations are high every day. You got to get the work done, you got to do it the right way.”

“Coach worked so hard to get us prepared,” he added.

At a press conference Monday, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick called Brady, “the guy that fights to the end and competes to the end. There’s no player I respect more.”

Brady has been a “pillar of strength for our football team for the last decade and a half,” Belichick added.

The coach’s praises extended to the whole team: “This is a hardworking team,” Belichick said. “They showed that last night.”

Belichick was also asked about how he’s handled the “deflate-gate” controversy, to which the coach responded that he’s tried to be “totally transparent.”


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NFL Legend Warren Sapp Arrested for Allegedly Soliciting Prostitution and Assault

Maricopa County Sheriff(PHOENIX) — Former NFL great Warren Sapp was arrested by Phoenix police on Monday for allegedly soliciting prostitution and assault, officials confirm to ABC News affiliate KNXV-TV.

The 42-year-old former defensive tackle for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Oakland Raiders, who had been working for the NFL Network prior to the incident, was arrested at a local hotel on Monday morning on one count of solicitation of a prostitute and two counts of assault, according to KNXV-TV.

Police told the local ABC affiliate that Sapp allegedly met two women in his hotel, then went up to his room, where an altercation took place over money.

Sapp is a seven-time Pro Bowl selection and a Super Bowl champion, and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2013. He was in Phoenix covering Super Bowl 49, which ended in a 28-24 victory for the New England Patriots.

According to police, he has denied assaulting the women, but allegedly admitted to the act of soliciting prostitution.

The NFL Network has reportedly terminated Sapp in the wake of the allegations.

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Conversation With Uber Driver Gave Malcolm Butler Super Bowl Confidence

Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images(PHOENIX) — Malcolm Butler, who grabbed a last-minute interception to secure his team’s 28-24 victory in Super Bowl 49, had a feeling that he was going to make a big play.

The New England Patriots rookie cornerback, 24, hadn’t been drafted out of West Alabama — and beyond the Patriots, no other team expressed interest in signing him. But the Vicksburg, Mississippi, native had a hunch. Someone offered him affirmation on Twitter. A coach wrote him before the game.

Butler says he really started to believe — in his Super Bowl fortune, in the moment, in the big play — after a conversation with an Uber driver.

“When I really believed it is, when I called an Uber driver for my mom, my mom called me and told me, ‘The guy spoke nice of you and he said he felt like you’re going to do something fantastic tomorrow.’ I just prayed on it and I just went out and played as hard as I could, and it turned out great,” Butler told ABC News on Monday.

Butler’s interception came with the Seattle Seahawks one yard away from scoring the go-ahead touchdown. Seahawks receiver Ricardo Lockette cut across the middle. Quarterback Russell Wilson threw the ball.

Butler had faced the play in practice in the days leading up to the Super Bowl. In practice, Butler got beat for a touchdown.

He wasn’t about to let history repeat itself.

“I got beat on the route in practice and the memorization and the preparation just helped me out, and I just jumped the route and made a play,” Butler told ABC News. “It was do-or-die time so I just had to do it.”

Butler is especially proud of the obstacles he’s overcome. He said his mother worked two jobs during his childhood to make ends meet for him and his siblings.

“You see some tough things growing up, and I just always said, ‘I didn’t want to have that life,'” he said. “I wanted to be someone. And I just wanted to make my family a better family and inspire young kids that anyone, that you can do whatever you wanted to do if you put your mind to it and you just believe and have faith.”

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Suspicious Package Shuts Down Major Atlanta Highway

iStock/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) — A suspicious package report closed a major highway in Atlanta on Monday, causing extreme traffic ahead of the evening rush hour.

The Georgia Department of Transportation reported that 14th Street closed between Techwood Dr. and West Peachtree St. and I-75/85 closed north and southbound at 14th Street. The ramps to 14th from I-75/85 in both directions were also closed.

All lanes of travel were reopened later in the afternoon on Monday and the scene was “rendered all clear,” Atlanta police told ABC News.

They’re turning folks around and sending them off the highway. @Atlanta_Traffic pic.twitter.com/ld7F8wPjWv

— Erika (@ErikaBirg) February 2, 2015

People are turning around, backing up, doing whatever they can to get off the highway #atltraffic pic.twitter.com/EISo2PVYmX

— Erika (@ErikaBirg) February 2, 2015

The highway will remain closed as the investigation continues, the Atlanta police reported.

This isn’t the first time severe traffic has struck Atlanta.

One year ago, a freak snowstorm turned the city’s roads into sheets of ice and left thousands of drivers stranded. A driver trying to get to the airport told ABC News he traveled one mile in eight hours.

This driver said he spent 19 hours on the road:

One year ago today… @audreybeckman and I spent 19 hours stuck on the highway. #Atlanta #snowmageddon2014 pic.twitter.com/2TF1UHMrXy

— Kyle Beckman (@kobeckman) January 29, 2015

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Flood of Donations for Michigan Man with 21-Mile Walk to Work

iStock/Thinkstock(DETROIT) — Evan Leedy, a 19-year-old Detroit college student, was on Facebook Sunday morning when he read a story about James Robertson, a 56-year-old factory worker who walks 21 miles each day to and from his job in Rochester Hills, Michigan.

“What he walks is like me walking to work every day and I honestly couldn’t believe that,” Leedy told ABC News. “I thought to myself, ‘What would I do if my car broke down?,’ and I thought, ‘I have my parents and I have money to get an Uber.’”

“This guy doesn’t have that and he didn’t quit,” Leedy said.

After reading the Detroit Free Press story on Robertson, Leedy saw in the comments that people were looking for a way to help so he started a GoFundMe page for Robertson, a complete stranger to him, within minutes of finishing the story.

“I initially set the goal for $5,000 just to get him something, bus fares and taxi rides,” Leedy said. “I went to go get ready and an hour later we had $2,000 donated already.”

“I bumped it up to $10,000 and within four hours we had over $10,000,” he said. “I bumped it up again and by the end of the day we had over $30,000 and now it’s up to over $50,000.”

Leedy says he received a call from the corporate offices of Honda offering to donate a car, and a local Chevrolet dealership, Rodgers Chevrolet, has also already offered to give Robertson a car.

“We are in a position that we can help and we just want to pay it forward,” Angela Osborne, a customer service specialist at Rodgers, told ABC News. “His story really struck home.”

All the attention and donations are coming as a shock to Robertson, according to his friend and sometimes driver, Blake Pollock.

Pollock, a vice president of wealth management at UBS, started seeing Robertson walking on his daily commute a few years ago. When Robertson cut through the parking lot of Pollock’s office building one day two years ago, the banker stopped him.

Pollock told ABC News he learned that Robertson walked most of his 20-plus mile commute daily, leaving his home in Detroit early each morning to get to work at a $10.55 per hour factory job in time for his 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. shift.

Robertson then does the reverse commute on the way home, having to walk even further because the bus lines on his route do not run at night, according to Pollock.

“I said, ‘Next time I see you I’ll give you a ride,’” Pollock recalled. “A few months later I saw him literally standing on top of a snow bank and gave him a ride.”

Pollock estimates he has given Robertson close to 100 rides in the years since, even leaving his home at night to make sure Robertson gets home safely.

“I’m sitting in my warm house and I’m thinking this guy has five more miles to walk,” Pollock said.

Pollock has also over the years taken friends who could not believe Robertson’s story along with him on rides to show that Robertson does indeed make that commute daily. Most amazing to Pollock is that Robertson, who could not be reached on Monday by ABC News, “thinks nothing of it.”

“He’s said, ‘I can’t imagine people who don’t work. I can’t imagine not doing that,’” Pollock said. “Nothing gets him down. If it’s rainy, if it’s cold, he just always says, ‘Hi Mr. Blake.’”

“I get to sit in the car and have that inspiration right next to me,” he said of Robertson, who began walking to work a decade ago when his then-car broke down.

Now, Pollock is leading the charge to make sure that Robertson — whom Pollock says is not aware of the extent of the outpouring of support — benefits from the donations made in his name. Part of that effort includes establishing a group of community leaders and professionals who can help advise Robertson on the influx of money.

“We want to make sure that all of the wonderful contributions go to truly benefit James and not get wasted on other things or go to people who want to leech off of him,” Pollock said of Robertson, whom he says lives with his girlfriend and her family in a home she inherited from her mother.

“He deserves to feel good and he deserves to not walk 20 plus miles to work,” Pollock said. “We don’t want to change his life. We want to enhance his life.”

Leedy, who started the fundraising campaign, plans to meet Robertson, along with Pollock, for the first time in Detroit Monday evening.

“My vision now is to really help in any way,” said Leedy, who noted that GoFundMe officials have already contacted him with offers to help make sure 100 percent of the donations go directly to Robertson. “This could really change his life.”

“I want to talk to James first and know what his needs are,” Leedy said. “It’s not my money or my choice. I’m just facilitating the whole thing.”

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NYC Commuters Stranded for Two Hours After Subway Track Freezes

File photo. Metropolitan Transportation Authority / Patrick Cashin(NEW YORK) — A stalled New York City subway car left more than 1,000 commuters stranded on the tracks for two hours Monday during the morning rush after frigid temperatures froze a portion of the third rail, officials said.

The 11-car train that came to a halt at 9:33 a.m. created a logjam on the entire line, leaving at least four trains stalled in its wake on the No. 7 line from Queens into Manhattan. All of the trains were back in nearby stations by 11:33 a.m., Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) officials said.

Temperatures dropped below freezing late Sunday night and into Monday morning, leading to an icy mix of weather and a potentially treacherous commute.

Photos and video from inside the stuck trains show commuters packed shoulder-to-shoulder.

Mayor Bill de Blasio urged New Yorkers to use public transportation Monday morning in order to keep the roads clear as snow and freezing rain that started falling Sunday night continued on into Monday morning.

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