Blaine stunt cage hit by protesters' attack
PROTESTERS today tried to attack the cage holding illusionist David Blaine next to the Thames in London.
In a dramatic raid just before 5am, a man scaled a scaffold support tower connected to Blaine’s glass cage.
Two accomplices had diverted security guards. The protester then tried to cut through the cable supplying water to the illusionist who is in the tenth day of his 44-day endurance challenge.
He also grabbed at other supporting cables and shouted abuse at the shocked magician, who was woken by the disturbance.
During the security breach the protester shouted: "Go home David, go back to America. We don’t want you here, I’m going to rock you."
Security guards shone a torch in the man’s face and tried to persuade him to come down.
Police cars arrived at the scene, as did two ambulances and a pair of fire engines, along with a hydraulic ladder.
Today, police said they had arrested the man and were trying to trace his accomplices. A police spokesman said: "We were called at 4.45am to a man who had climbed onto the water tower near Blaine’s box. The Fire Brigade and ourselves were monitoring the situation.
"The man threw water bottles and other objects from the tower and tried to cut through the cord connected to the tower but without success.
"He came down of his own accord at 5.18am. A man in his 40s was arrested for criminal damage and was taken to a south London police station."
The attacker and his accomplices arrived in a white van in a nearby street and, while two of them distracted guards, the third used a ladder to scale a fence and make his way towards the water tower.
The repeated tugging of vital mooring ropes caused 30-year-old Blaine’s makeshift home to swing violently.
The incident is the most dramatic attempt yet to disrupt Blaine’s record attempt.
Since he began his stunt, the illusionist he has suffered a barrage of abuse and mockery from people unimpressed by his self-imposed isolation.
Eggs have been thrown and he has been subjected to taunts. Other people have bared their breasts or bottoms, while at one stage he was even the target of a golf ball hit from Tower Bridge. Drums have been used to keep him awake at night and a magazine hired a helicopter to suspend a burger above his box in a move designed to increase his hunger pangs.
But others have been more welcoming, with one member of the audience playing chess on the ground while Blaine relayed his moves to him, and dozens of spectators have gathered every day to shout their encouragement and pin good luck messages to the security fence.
Today’s incident sparked a groundswell of sympathy for Blaine - who has only a supply of water and a diary with him - from worried onlookers who hurled abuse at the attacker.
However, a small faction of the crowd encouraged the protester but were quickly silenced by security guards.
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Saturday 18 May 2013
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