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Boat Driver Charged in Crash That Killed Bride, Best Man Appears in Court

Jojo John appeared in court Wednesday, weeks after the Hudson River boat crash that killed a bride and her groom's best man

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Audio between first responders and the dispatcher in the search for the boat that crashed into a barge on the Hudson River was released Wednesday, the same day the the family of the victims issued their first public statements. Jen Maxfield reports. (Published Wednesday, Jul 31, 2013)

    The 35-year-old man who was piloting the boat in the Hudson River crash that killed a bride-to-be and her groom's best man appeared in court Wednesday to answer to charges of vehicular manslaughter and vehicular assault. 

    Jojo John walked into the Orangetown Courthouse in Orangeburg, Rockland County, N.Y., Wednesday with a team of lawyers and several family members. He was wearing a neck brace.

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    The wake for the bride killed in a Hudson River boating crash will be held Wednesday, and the florist who was to design her bridal bouquet is now making arrangements for her funeral. Jen Maxfield reports. (Published Wednesday, Jul 31, 2013)

    John did not speak to reporters, but defense attorney David Nahrain said outside the courthouse his client wanted to extend his condolences to the victims. 

    Authorities said there was probable cause that John was intoxicated when he was crashed the 21-foot Stingray into a construction barge near the Tappan Zee Bridge on July 26.

    Coast Guard: Barge Fully Lit in Hudson Boat Crash

    [NY] Coast Guard: Barge Fully Lit in Hudson Boat Crash
    Authorities say a bride who was killed in a Hudson River boating crash two weeks before her wedding died from drowning and head injuries. Officials also said the barge into which the boat driver crashed was fully lit. Jen Maxfield reports. (Published Monday, Jul 29, 2013)

    There were four other people on board the boat, including Lindsey Stewart, 30, and fiance Brian Bond, 36, who were set to be married Aug. 10. Bond's best man, 30-year-old Mark Lennon, was also on the boat, along with another friend.

    Stewart and Lennon were thrown overboard in the boat crash and killed.

    Driver Accused of Intoxication in Bride Death Crash

    [NY] Boat Driver Arrested on Suspicion of Being Intoxicated in Crash That Killed Bride
    The operator of a boat carrying members of a wedding party that crashed into a barge on the Hudson River Friday night, killing a bride and her fiance's best man while injuring three others, including the groom, has been arrested on suspicion of intoxication. Checkey Beckford reports. (Published Sunday, Jul 28, 2013)

    Their families have said that the passengers on the boat "had consumed very little alcohol and considered themselves sober," and pleaded for information from boaters familiar with the crash scene.

    Stewart's and Lennon's families also said in the statement, "Compounding our agony is the rush, by some, to cast blame on or even malign the victims."

    The families asked Hudson River boaters to submit information about the barges in that area, suggesting they were not properly lit.

    John's lawyer David Nahrain said he was also conducting an independent investigation and asked boaters and witnesses to contact him at tzbarge@gmail.com. 

    The New York State Thruway Authority and the Coast Guard have said the barge lighting appeared to be functioning normally and met all regulations.

    Prosecutors asked the judge Wednesday for a one-month continuation to conduct a felony investigation. John is due back in court Sept. 25.