Socialite charged with hitting Jewish lawyer says she broke finger in scuffle


(JTA) — During her trial for assault, a socialite who is accused of hitting a lawyer with and making an anti-Semitic remark said she sustained serious injuries in the incident.

Jacqueline Kent Cooke, daughter of the late billionaire Jack Kent Cooke, on Thursday appeared in Manhattan Criminal Court, where prosecutors said they were seeking her medical records stemming from her clash with Matthew Haberkorn on New Year’s Eve, the New York Post reported.

Her right hand was bandaged as a result of an injury she said she sustained in the incident, and which she also said required the surgical insertion last month of a titanium implant into her right ring finger.

Cooke was charged with second-degree assault in the New Year’s Eve incident, in which she allegedly hit Haberkorn with a purse made out of glass.

Prosecutors said Thursday that they are still probing the incident and have yet to present her case to a grand jury.

According to the New York Daily News, Haberkorn, 52, of the San Francisco area, his mother, wife and four daughters were collecting their outdoor gear from a coat check after eating at a high-end Manhattan restaurant when Cooke allegedly told him, “Hurry up, Jew. I got places to be.” Cooke disputes this, saying her words were: “Excuse me, I have to get through.”

Haberkorn’s wife, Linda Thomas, who according to the Daily News is not Jewish, replied: “We all got places to be. You know what? I take total offense at that. You’re small-minded.”

Cooke’s boyfriend got involved, saying “Happy bat mitzvah, girls,” the Daily News reported.

When Haberkorn confronted Cooke outside over her comments, she reportedly hit him over the head with her glass purse, a Lulu Guinness Chloe Mirrored Perspex Box Clutch that sells for $300, and pulled him to the ground. He sustained a large cut on his head.

Haberkorn in the Daily News described Cooke as “clearly drunk.”

Cooke accused Haberkorn of cursing at her. One of Haberkorn’s daughters shot video of the incident outside the restaurant on her cellphone. Cooke and her boyfriend ran off following the confrontation, the Daily News reported.

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