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Man accused of causing deadly crash after a pebble hit his windshield

A man accused of causing a deadly crash by stopping his car to confront someone says it was not road rage.

Juan Marquez faced a judge Friday after he was accused of causing a crash in August that killed a Coweta County mother of five.

Georgia State Patrol said he stopped his car on I-85 South when a pebble hit his windshield.

Troopers said he thought the pebble came from a tractor-trailer, so he confronted the driver.

GSP said the tractor-trailer stopped as well, but 32-year-old Jessica Jose, of Grantville, slammed into the back of the tractor-trailer.

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"It's got nothing to do with road rage at all. It's just an individual who was trying to get a driver's attention," said Marquez's attorney, Emmanuel West. "It's unfortunate that someone lost their life, but he didn't mean for that to happen."

Marquez has been charged with reckless driving and vehicular homicide.

"He's a nice guy, innocent until proven guilty," West said. 

Channel 2's Matt Johnson spoke to Jose's family shortly after the crash. Her mother said she holds Marquez responsible. 

"These kids will never heal from all of this. They will try, but they will never heal and I hope you know this and I hope you stay where you're at for a long time," Michelle Bennett said of Marquez.

The judge granted Marquez a $25,000 bond, but ordered him not to drive, even for work. West said Marquez is a father of six and a real estate contractor who owns his own business. He said being able to drive is how Marquez provides for his family. 

"That's created a lot of hardship for him and his family," West said. 

Channel 2 Action News, League of Women Voters hosting mayoral forum

Channel 2 Action News is partnering with the League of Women Voters to host an open forum as the race for Atlanta mayor heats up.

All candidates for Atlanta mayor are invited to participate and talk about the issues on Sept. 28 at Emory University. 

You can watch the live event LIVE on WSBTV.com or on the official WSB-TV Facebook page from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. 

The forum will be moderated by WSB’s Director of Editorials & Public Affairs Jocelyn Dorsey.

There are more than a dozen people in the race to become Atlanta’s next mayor. Kasim Reed’s tenure ends in 2018.

An early poll from August shows candidate Mary Norwood leading the pack, with 25.4 percent of the vote. However, three candidates -- Keisha Lance Bottoms, Peter Aman and Caesar Mitchell -- have more than 10 percent of the vote. On top of that, nearly 20 percent say they’re undecided or have no opinion.

Prosecutor shot by husband asks for financial help in her recovery

The local prosecutor who was shot and left paralyzed by her estranged husband told Channel 2 Action News she is making significant progress in her recovery.

But she's now running into a financial challenge.

Channel 2’s Audrey Washington spoke to April Ross at the Shepherd Center in Buckhead on Friday where Ross is working to regain strength in her right hand.

"I've been doing very well," Ross said.

Ross has needed a caregiver since 2014 when she was shot several times by her estranged husband in Atlanta. He then turned the gun on himself. 

While in recovery making major improvements, Ross learned her insurance will not cover her in-home caregiver. So Ross is working to raise money so she can continue her progress.

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"Even if you make good money, it gets really expensive needing every-day caregiving,” Ross said. “My family has helped me compensate. They come in the evening, but through the week I need someone who can come in and help me get up and ready."

Ross has set up a GoFundMe to raise money for her caregiver and for a machine that would help her live more independently.

“So I could spend thirty minutes a day, every day, just standing up," Ross said. "It’s great for my bone density, my circulation. But I tell you one thing it’s a huge psychological benefit.”

Right now the donations are coming in. Ross said she’s moved by the response.

“I’m blessed by people’s willingness to still support me,” Ross said.

Ross’ ultimate goal is to walk again.

“I can’t stop thinking that,” Ross said.

Man hit, killed in the middle of I-85 in DeKalb

A man sitting in the middle of I-85 North in DeKalb County was hit and killed early Friday, police said. 

We first told you about the deadly accident on Channel 2 Action News This Morning. The crash blocked all northbound lanes of I-85 near North Druid Hills Road for hours.

[DOWNLOAD: WSB-TV News App]

The interstate reopened just after 7 a.m., but the investigation continued to impact traffic from Midtown to DeKalb County, according to the WSB 24-hour Traffic Center. It did not impact the southbound ride from Gwinnett County.

TRENDING STORIES:

The Traffic Center recommended drivers traveling from downtown or Midtown use Buford Highway as an alternate and re-enter the interstate via Clairmont Road.

According to DeKalb police Detective E. Gakstatter, two cars hit the the victim, who died on the scene. Authorities have not released the victim’s name or said why he was sitting without any clothes on in the middle of the interstate.

Officers interviewed both drivers and other witnesses.

The drivers were not charged in connection with the deadly accident, Gakstatter said.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this report.

Equifax apologizes for sending people to fake company website

Equifax linked people to a fake online site that mimicked the link for its site on its massive Sept. 7 security breach that affected 143 million Americans.

After the breach, which involved Social Security numbers and other key identifying information, Equifax set up a site, equifaxsecurity2017.com, that directed people to information on the hacking incident and links to sign up for free credit monitoring and other protections the company is offering.

But in several tweets in recent days, a company employee directed people to a fake site that flipped the name of the site and sent people to a similar-appearing site.

Rather than being a phishing site that could have reaped unsuspecting folks’ personal data yet again, it was set up by Nick Sweeting, a software engineer, according to news reports.

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People who clicked on the link got this headline:“Cybersecurity Incident & Important Consumer Information Which is Totally Fake, Why Did Equifax Use A Domain That’s So Easily Impersonated By Phishing Sites?”

Sweeting told the New York Times his site received more than 200,000 hits before he took it down Wednesday evening.

Equifax apologized for the mistake. “All posts using the wrong link have been taken down. To confirm, the correct website is https://www.equifaxsecurity2017.com. We apologize for the confusion,” the company said in a statement.

The company also warned people to watch for fake websites and emails targeting Equifax customers and people responding to the hacking incident.

“These scams, designed to capture personal information (known as “phishing”) are designed to appear as if they are from Equifax and the emails may link to websites purporting to be operated by Equifax,” said the company.

Equifax apologizes for sending people to fake company website

Equifax linked people to a fake online site that mimicked the link for its site on its massive Sept. 7 security breach that affected 143 million Americans.

After the breach, which involved Social Security numbers and other key identifying information, Equifax set up a site, equifaxsecurity2017.com, that directed people to information on the hacking incident and links to sign up for free credit monitoring and other protections the company is offering.

But in several tweets in recent days, a company employee directed people to a fake site that flipped the name of the site and sent people to a similar-appearing site.

Rather than being a phishing site that could have reaped unsuspecting folks’ personal data yet again, it was set up by Nick Sweeting, a software engineer, according to news reports.

TRENDING STORIES:

People who clicked on the link got this headline:“Cybersecurity Incident & Important Consumer Information Which is Totally Fake, Why Did Equifax Use A Domain That’s So Easily Impersonated By Phishing Sites?”

Sweeting told the New York Times his site received more than 200,000 hits before he took it down Wednesday evening.

Equifax apologized for the mistake. “All posts using the wrong link have been taken down. To confirm, the correct website is https://www.equifaxsecurity2017.com. We apologize for the confusion,” the company said in a statement.

The company also warned people to watch for fake websites and emails targeting Equifax customers and people responding to the hacking incident.

“These scams, designed to capture personal information (known as “phishing”) are designed to appear as if they are from Equifax and the emails may link to websites purporting to be operated by Equifax,” said the company.

Man hit, killed in the middle of I-85 in DeKalb

A man sitting in the middle of I-85 North in DeKalb County was hit and killed early Friday, police said. 

We first told you about the deadly accident on Channel 2 Action News This Morning. The crash blocked all northbound lanes of I-85 near North Druid Hills Road for hours.

[DOWNLOAD: WSB-TV News App]

The interstate reopened just after 7 a.m., but the investigation continued to impact traffic from Midtown to DeKalb County, according to the WSB 24-hour Traffic Center. It did not impact the southbound ride from Gwinnett County.

TRENDING STORIES:

The Traffic Center recommended drivers traveling from downtown or Midtown use Buford Highway as an alternate and re-enter the interstate via Clairmont Road.

According to DeKalb police Detective E. Gakstatter, two cars hit the the victim, who died on the scene. Authorities have not released the victim’s name or said why he was sitting without any clothes on in the middle of the interstate.

Officers interviewed both drivers and other witnesses.

The drivers were not charged in connection with the deadly accident, Gakstatter said.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this report.

DeKalb County schools to add extra time to school days due to Irma

After several days of power outages and damage to parts of the county from Tropical Storm Irma, DeKalb County schools is extending the school days to make up for missed days.

Each day will be extended by 20 minutes beginning Monday, Oct. 2 through Wednesday, Dec. 20.

Superintendent/CEO R. Stephen Green and his leadership team said they made the decision to extend the days rather then use the four inclement weather days built into the district’s calendar. 

“We did not want to simply recoup lost moments. Our most precious commodity is instructional time, and we want to make this an effective learning opportunity,” said Green. “We lost four days and we’re trying to be as creative and productive as we can about recapturing that time. Extending the school day with this schedule is the least disruptive for all parties.”

TRENDING STORIES:

The schools said a primary goal was not to impact Fall Break or Winter Break for both families and employees who may have commitments based on the approved school year calendar.

They also noted the unpredictability of North Georgia weather in the winter, which the district does not want to use all its inclement weather days before the onset of that season.

DeKalb County schools to add extra time to school days due to Irma

After several days of power outages and damage to parts of the county from Tropical Storm Irma, DeKalb County schools is extending the school days to make up for missed days.

Each day will be extended by 20 minutes beginning Monday, Oct. 2 through Wednesday, Dec. 20.

Superintendent/CEO R. Stephen Green and his leadership team said they made the decision to extend the days rather then use the four inclement weather days built into the district’s calendar. 

“We did not want to simply recoup lost moments. Our most precious commodity is instructional time, and we want to make this an effective learning opportunity,” said Green. “We lost four days and we’re trying to be as creative and productive as we can about recapturing that time. Extending the school day with this schedule is the least disruptive for all parties.”

TRENDING STORIES:

The schools said a primary goal was not to impact Fall Break or Winter Break for both families and employees who may have commitments based on the approved school year calendar.

They also noted the unpredictability of North Georgia weather in the winter, which the district does not want to use all its inclement weather days before the onset of that season.

‘Cake Boss' opening store in Atlanta Saturday, some stars coming

If you have ever craved the desserts from TLC’s “Cake Boss,” soon you’ll be able to stuff your face with the real thing.

Stars from the TV show, which chronicles Buddy Valastro and his crew inside their New Jersey bakery making extravagant decorative cakes, will open a Carlo’s Bakery kiosk inside Cumberland Mall on Saturday.

Roy Copeland, a property management associate at Cumberland, said he was at Perimeter Mall when  Valastro opened the bakery’s first outpost in Georgia .

Copeland said 5,000 people showed up at the event, which started at 6 a.m.

The difference at Cumberland is that Valastro won’t be attending.  Instead, “Cake Boss” co-stars Mauro Castano and Mary Sciarrone will open the store, and it’ll run from 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Still, Copeland is hopeful. “It should be a pretty lively event.”

The @CakeBossBuddy opens a @CarlosBakery in Atlanta Saturday. Some stars from the show will be there! More: https://t.co/CfrrtpwJnv pic.twitter.com/OHBVAW91DJ — Nelson Hicks (@NelsonHicksWSB) September 22, 2017