The New York Police Department is actively investigating two sexual-assault complaints against celebrity magician David Blaine, the Daily Beast reports.
While the details of the allegations have not yet been made public, a senior official at the department told the Daily Beast that the Special Victims Unit detectives have taken statements from two women. However, at least one of the complaints may fall out of the statute of limitations, as someone familiar with one of the woman’s allegations told the publication that the incident dates back to 1998.
In a statement to the Beast, NYPD spokesman Phil Walzak “[urged] anyone who has been a victim to file a report so we can perform a comprehensive investigation, and offer support and services to survivors.” On Tuesday, Blaine’s spokeswoman told Page Six that he “denies the accusations that have been reported,” and that he will cooperate with any related investigation.
This isn’t the magician’s first encounter with law enforcement over a sexual-assault claim. In October 2017, art dealer Natasha Prince told Scotland Yard detectives that Blaine anally raped her in London in 2004 when she was working as a model — a complaint that law enforcement investigated but later declined to take further action. (Blaine “vehemently denied” the claims through his lawyer.)
Following the incident, Prince told the Beast that she started going to therapy and “quit modeling very early,” as the alleged rape had made her so “insecure” that she feared she wouldn’t be able to get a job again.
“I didn’t get to be the 30-year-old model I had hoped to be,” she said. “After this happened, I didn’t want to go out, and I didn’t want to go to my castings.”
This post has been updated.