VA Inspector
Thursday, June 3, 2004 6:54:56 AM
No matter which side of the fence you are on. Keep these folks in your thoughts and hope we will all become better people as a result of this tragic incident. 

Trial begins in Lake fair death
Electrocution blamed on improper wiring
Thursday, June 03, 2004
Maggi Martin
Plain Dealer Reporter
Greyson Yoe would be alive today if Nick Rock had properly connected electrical wires leading to a Lake County Fair ride last summer, prosecutors say.

The bad connection caused an electrical shock that injured the 8-year-old boy while he stood in line at his first fair with his dad. He died three weeks later.

It also left Rock, a 40-year fair employee, fighting charges of reckless homicide and involuntary manslaughter. Ride inspectors and owners across the country are watching the case with interest, according to the National Association of Amusement Rides.

Rock's trial started Wednesday in Lake County Common Pleas Court, where the 80-year-old former Cleveland Electric Illuminating lineman is charged with recklessly causing Greyson's death because he did not follow state code in properly grounding a green wire.

"You are not going to hear that he intended to kill. But he made a huge mistake in judgment," Assistant Prosecutor Mark Bartolotta told the jury. "He made the connection and did it wrong, and as a result a boy died."

Defense attorney Neil Wilson said the blame should be placed elsewhere. Two state inspectors failed to find the faulty connection, he said. The Scooter ride was supposed to be grounded at the machine base and not at the pole, where Rock made the connection.

"Nick Rock's function was to hook the power up," Wilson said. "He had no responsibility to ensure its safe operation or to inspect it. It was the obligation of the owner to ensure the safety of the ride."

Wilson said several other people at the fair reported being shocked by the ride, but no one informed Rock of that.

Greyson's father, one of nine witnesses to testify Wednesday, said he spent Aug. 13, 2003, at the family nursery with his son. Greyson's fair trip was a reward for their hard work. After the demolition derby and the horse show, Greyson begged for one more ride before they left. The boy was standing in line holding a metal rail when he suddenly fell over.

"I saw him kneeling and went over," Bill Yoe said. "He didn't move at all. I touched him, and I knew something was wrong. He was lifeless."

Rock is one of five people charged in Greyson's death. Two ride inspectors, Kalin Turner and Theodore Brubaker, ride installer James Highway and ride owner Eugene Chaffee of New York face charges of involuntary manslaughter and reckless homicide. Their trials are scheduled this summer.

What the wise do in the beginning, fools do in the end.
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Thursday, June 3, 2004 9:20:56 AM
Rocks lack of interest in grounding the ride caused the boys death. He should have followed up to see that it was grounded but knowing Rock, he wouldn't give a damn.
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