Illusionist David Copperfield is the latest celebrity to be accused of sexual misconduct. The magician is denying the allegations made by a woman, who claims she was drugged and sexually assaulted by David in 1988 — when she was just 17 years old.
According to Brittany Lewis, the alleged incident took place after David judged a modeling competition she was participating in. She explained how David invited her to one of his shows in California following the pageant, and while at the bar, she noticed him slip something in her drink. “I asked, ‘What are you doing?’ and he said, ‘Oh, I’m just sharing,'” she told The Wrap. She went on to take a couple of sips and admits to losing consciousness. “I remember my clothes being taken off,” she explained. “He was kissing my face and then I remember him starting to go down on my body with his face, and then, as soon as he started going down, I just completely blacked out.”
She continued, "He wanted to me know that nothing happened because I was underage. He said: ‘I didn’t enter you.' There was no fluid but he could have had a condom." Even before her story was published, David preemptively denied the new allegations against him.
"The #MeToo movement is crucial and long overdue. We all want people who feel they've been victims of sexual harassment to be empowered, and as a rule we should listen to, so more people feel comfortable coming forward. It's important," the 61-year-old said in a statement. "But imagine what's like, believing in the movement and having also been falsely accused publicly in the past... I've lived with years of news reports about me being accused of fabricated, heinous acts, with few telling the story of the accuser getting arrested, and my innocence. Knowing that false accusers can negatively impact the believability of others and are a true disservice to those who have been victims of sexual misconduct, I didn't draw attention to. So while I weather another storm, I want the movement to flourish. Always listen, and consider everything carefully, but please for everyone's sake don't rush to judgment."
In 2007, David was accused by Lacey Carroll of rape — who alleged she was sexually assaulted by the magician on his private island in the Bahamas while holding her head underwater. However, the former Miss USA contestant was arrested and charged with providing a false statement to police in another case in which she also alleged rape and the case was closed without charges in 2009. That has not stopped social media from skewering the magician. "For my next trick, I will make my hand disappear... down your pants. — David Copperfield," one Twitter user wrote before another added, "Another illusion created by a powerful pervert. Funny the same creeps always get accused of the same stuff. David Cop-a-feel at his finest." Brittany has no plans to pursue a criminal or civil case against David — but even if she wanted to, the statue of limitations would prevent her from doing so.
If you need support, The National Sexual Assault Hotline is available 24/7 at 1-800-656-4673. You will be connected with a trained staff member in your area. Or visit RAINN.org to chat online one-on-one with a support specialist at any time.