Graham Rayman and Leonard Greene
New York Daily News
At least two women have claimed they were sexually assaulted by magician David Blaine and the NYPD on Monday said it has opened an investigation into the allegations.
Detectives from the department’s Special Victims Unit took statements from two women, although one of the claims may fall outside the statute of limitations, according to the Daily Beast, which first reported the story.
Both women told investigators that Blaine, 45, sexually assaulted them inside his Manhattan apartment, one in 1997 and the other in 1998, police sources said.
The woman who says Blaine assaulted her in 1997 told police she met him through a mutual friend. She came forward with her allegation about a year ago, sources said. The second woman went to cops just last week.
“We are aware of the allegations,” NYPD Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea said at an unrelated press conference Monday. “There’s an active special victims investigation.”
He declined to comment further.
Blaine has not been charged. He told The Daily Beast he has not been approached by police.
“The NYPD takes sexual assault and rape cases extremely seriously, and urges anyone who has been a victim to file a report so we can perform a comprehensive investigation, and offer support and services to survivors,” an NYPD spokesman said in a separate statement Monday.
Blaine has faced similar charges in the past. In 2004, former model Natasha Prince accused Blaine of raping her at a private home in London, an allegation Blaine denied. Detectives at Scotland Yard took Prince’s statement but took no further action after investigating her claim.
The Brooklyn-born magician is famous for his death-defying stunts and elaborate illusions. He was buried underground in a plastic coffin for a week in New York in 1999, and also hung in a box above London’s Thames River for 44 days in 2003.
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