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Magician recuperating after scalp fire

An American magician was recuperating Sunday in the Dominican Republic after a local television show host lit his head on fire with a flammable cologne.

Chico, California-native Wayne Houchin said he is receiving treatment for burns that doctors are cautiously optimistic will not result in scars. A Sunday statement on his Facebook page says he is "resting, healing & working through the legal process" in the Caribbean nation, where he had been performing with a group of fellow magicians.

During a Nov. 26 appearance on the Dominican Republic's "Closer To The Stars" TV program, guest host Franklin Barazarte abruptly doused the U.S. magician's head with "Agua de Florida," a flammable cologne commonly used in Santeria rituals. A video of the incident shows the magician's head bursting into flames as Barazarte runs his hands over Houchin's hair.

It is unclear why the TV host doused his head in the liquid and what ignited it. The program has not commented on the incident.

The video also shows Houchin, Barazarte and others struggling to extinguish the flames for several seconds. The incident was not broadcast on Dominican television, but a video of it has appeared on the Internet.

Houchin said Barazarte's actions were completely unexpected and he considers it a criminal attack.

He said "the outrage here and outpouring of support has been incredible."

The Canadian Press


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