CINCINNATI, Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Handcuffs were not enough to stop magician Phil Dalton from escaping from an 879-pound pumpkin plummeting to the ground in Cincinnati, observers say.
Witness Jason Watson, 28, said he watched Dalton be handcuffed before stepping into the large pumpkin, which was then raised 70 feet up by a rope that was lit on fire, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Sunday.
Watson said while Saturday's stunt at Berries & Blooms Farm Market seemed inescapable in the given time, he was shocked not to see Dalton when the rope snapped and pumpkin shattered on the ground.
"He had me startled. They had said he was going to escape in three minutes -- and when the rope snapped in 1 minute and 30 seconds, I thought it was over for him," Watson told the Enquirer.
"How did he do that?" an equally perplexed Jenna McMullen, 6, asked following the magic show.
For Dalton, who then appeared on a nearby stage unharmed, the magic act went exactly as planned and he revealed no secrets about his exciting escape.
"Everybody was looking where they were supposed to look. Burning ropes on a pumpkin make a great misdirection," the 32-year-old performer said.