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Baltimore Escape Artist Spencer Horsman Nearly Drowns When Stunt Goes Wrong

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- A local escape artist nearly drowned while rehearsing a stunt for a new show set to tour around the country.

It's hard to walk around Federal Hill without hearing people talk about Spencer Horsman. His father Ken tells WJZ's Rick Ritter that Spencer spent years training for the stunt, but things quickly turned horrifying during a rehearsal for an upcoming show with Las Vegas headliner Criss Angel.

A heart-pounding video first uploaded to YouTube shows Horsman's stunt gone terribly wrong.

Inside a water-filled glass cage hanging 30 feet above the stage, Horsman passes out before he can break out of the cage, forcing the crew to smash open the glass and rescue his motionless body.

"This was unusual, this was a first, he's never done it this far," his dad said.

The Horsmans own the popular Illusions Magic Bar on Charles Street and Lounge, where some of Spencer's finest magic moments have taken place.

"This neighborhood has watched Spencer grow up since he was a little boy. He started magic when he was 4 years old right here in this building," his dad said.

This stunt, however, was the most terrifying.

"There's a big danger factor in anything he does like this. People just think he's sitting in a tank of water," said Ken.

His father said Spencer was exhausted from rehearsing, which caught up to him in the tank while trying to escape.

"Anything can happen. You're holding your breath. Take the breath at the wrong time, anything can happen," his dad said.

He told WJZ the 29-year-old can spend up to 16 hours rehearsing for certain stunts.

Since the incident, Ken said his son couldn't be better and is recovering just fine. Despite the scare, he's not holding back with the stunt.

"I want him to follow those dreams, wherever they're going to take him," he said.

If you're familiar with magic and entertainment, you likely know who Criss Angel is. Criss handpicked Spencer -- one of seven magicians to be a part of his new show which debuts in Connecticut this weekend.

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