By Tim Binnall
A now-former haunted house performer in Ohio is both out of a job and facing assault charges after he got way too into character and stabbed a young boy in the foot with a knife. According to a local media report, the bizarre incident occurred at the '7 Floors of Hell' attraction in the city of Berea when Karen Bednarski and her 11-year-old son Frank stopped by the establishment for some scares earlier this month. Unfortunately for them, what they thought would be a fun evening of faux frights turned into a very real nightmare when the youngster crossed paths with an actor who clearly took his craft very seriously.
During their visit, Frank was approached by performer Christopher Pogozelski, who was brandishing a Bowie knife in an attempt to instill fear in the heart of the haunted house patron. However, as precocious tots are wont to do, the boy was unfazed by the encounter and dismissed the weapon as a fake. In response, Pogozelski began jabbing at the ground around Frank's feet and, in the process, punctured the child's croc shoe. It was then that the youngster and his mom discovered that only was the knife real, but that the performer had just stabbed the boy's toe. As one might imagine, chaos subsequently ensued with workers at the site applying first aid to the wounded foot and police arriving on the scene to investigate the strange turn of events.
Later conceding to police that "using the knife was not a good idea," Pogozelski insisted that the stabbing was an accident and remained with Frank throughout the entire ordeal. For their part, the owners of the haunted house say that the decision to use a real weapon was an ill-advised bit of improv on the part of the performer, who was supposed to be wielding a rubber prop. As such, Pogozelski was fired once the full magnitude of his 'method acting' came to light and authorities also charged him with negligent assault. To their credit, Frank and his mother finished their journey through the haunted house after the boy's foot had been bandaged, although the stabbing may wind up haunting the establishment further as the Bednarski family is considering filing a lawsuit over the incident.