Vortex ride operator released from jail


Tim Tutterrow, 46, quietly bonded out of jail on Monday, which means that investigators have gotten all they need from him, at least for now.

However, the Vortex ride itself is still at the State Fairgrounds, which is evidence that the investigation is not over.

Earlier this week, Tutterrow was in a Wake County courtroom asking a judge to lower his bond from $225,000 to $100,000.

The district attorney said that was fine with the request since he didn't consider Tutterrow a flight risk and because he said Tutterrow has cooperated fully with investigators.

Hours later, he quietly bonded out of jail.

His attorney said Tutterrow didn't leave town until mid-week because he had to gather up personal belongings from the fairgrounds. He is now back at his Georgia home.

Tutterrow was at the controls of the Vortex in the closing days of the fair. As fairgoers were getting off the ride, it started back up. Three members of the same family were badly injured.

Tutterrow is charged with two counts of assault with a deadly weapon and one count of felony assault on a juvenile with a deadly weapon.

Investigators say the ride malfunctioned because Tutterrow bypassed safety features to keep the ride operating.

The ride owner's son, 32-year-old Joshua Gene Macaroni, has also been charged, but he bonded out immediately. Investigators haven't said if he is also cooperating. While he was not in North Carolina at the time of the accident, he faces the same charges as Tutterrow.

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