Fair ride owner appears in NC court over injuries

RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- The Georgia owner of a thrill ride that seriously injured three people at the North Carolina State Fair has made a brief court appearance on felony charges.

Joshua Gene Macaroni of Quitman, GA, appeared before a Wake County judge Friday on two counts of assault with a deadly weapon and a third charge for assaulting a juvenile. He is free on $225,000 bond.

Macaroni is the second man arrested for an Oct. 24 incident where the Vortex ride spun into motion as people were trying to get out. Investigators say the ride had been tampered with to bypass critical safety equipment. Three people remain hospitalized, including a 14-year-old.

Defense attorney Dan Boyce said he is puzzled why his client was charged. Macaroni's next court date is Nov. 18.

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