Copperfield: I’m queasy about injuries, can’t recall fall

LAS VEGAS — David Copperfield told a Las Vegas jury that he’s queasy about injuries and would remember if any audience volunteers were hurt performing illusions during his show.

The magician has testified he didn’t remember anyone being injured in nearly 20 years of performing a signature vanishing illusion. He returned to the witness stand Thursday in a negligence lawsuit by a British man who claims he was badly injured in a fall during a November 2013 show at the MGM Grand hotel.

Attorney Benedict Morelli, representing Gavin Cox, asked Copperfield if he recalled a woman who said she shattered her wrist several years before Cox’s injury, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported .

“I’m very squeamish,” Copperfield said. “If I saw that, I would remember it. I would be really affected by it.”

During testimony last week, Copperfield said he was surprised to learn after he was sued in August 2014 that Cox claimed to have been hurt nine months earlier. Copperfield said he stopped performing the vanishing act in 2015.

The illusion appears to make 13 people disappear from a curtained set onstage and seemingly reappear a little more about a minute later in the back the theatre.

Jurors have heard that the secret of the trick was for Copperfield to remain on stage while stagehands quickly directed the audience volunteers past dark curtains, through a series of indoor hallways and an outdoor alleyway to re-enter the building for the show finale.

“Is it your understanding that Mr. Cox is at fault for his own accident?” Morelli asked.

“Accidents happen,” Copperfield said. “People fall down every day. I’m not going to blame somebody.”

Jurors have heard about several injuries to audience volunteers, including videotaped testimony from a Michigan schoolteacher who said she fell and bloodied a knee while stagehands urged her to run during the trick.

Cox and his wife, from Kent, England, are suing Copperfield, the MGM Grand hotel and several business entities, alleging negligence and seeking damages. Cox claims more than $400,000 in medical expenses from lasting brain and body injuries.

Testimony in the civil trial is expected to continue next week.

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