NEW YORK (Tribune News Service) - Millionaire socialite Jacqueline Kent Cooke is being questioned by cops over accusations she hit a California lawyer with her fancy glass purse and called his mother a Jew outside a swank Upper East Side restaurant on New Year's Eve, the New York Daily News has learned.
She was in handcuffs in the 19th precinct stationhouse Wednesday evening.
Matthew Haberkorn, 52, of the San Francisco Bay Area, told The News he tangled with Cooke after dining with his 77-year-old mom, his wife and four daughters at Caravaggio on E. 74th St. near Madison Ave.
They had finished a holiday meal at the restaurant, which boasts $55 veal chops, and were getting their coats when Cooke, the daughter of former Washington Redskins football team owner Jack Kent Cooke, got annoyed and belligerent, according to Haberkorn.
"She says, 'Hurry up Jew,' " Haberkorn said. "My wife goes, 'What did you say?' "
Haberkorn's wife Linda Thomas, 51, said Cooke told her again, "Hurry up, Jew. I got places to be."
"I said, 'We all got places to be,' " Thomas told the Daily News. "I said, 'You know what? I take total offense at that. You're small-minded.' We were so surprised that on the Upper East Side that this would happen."
Thomas and Haberkorn said that during the blowup Cooke's boyfriend sneeringly said to their daughters, "Happy bat mitzvah, girls."
Haberkorn went outside and confronted Cooke on the sidewalk after Cooke left the restaurant.
"I walked up to her and asked her why she said that," Haberkorn said. "She took her purse, which was a mirrored glass purse, and smashed me with it."
Cooke wielded a $300 Lulu Guinness Chloe Mirrored Perspex Box Clutch.
"I am inspired by a broad range of designers and usually drawn towards unique pieces that have a bit of an edge to them," she told The Washingtonian in a 2014 interview on her fashion tastes.
Cooke's boyfriend tried to intervene when Haberkorn confronted her, telling Haberkorn to drop it.
"She just f---ing hit me!" Haberkorn protested, cellphone video taken by one of his daughters shows.
"You called me a f---ing bitch, you called me a c---," an unsteady Cooke sobs from the ground.
"You called me a f---ing Jew," an outraged Haberkorn responds.
Cooke ran up and hit him again with the purse and fell again to the ground, the video shows.
"She falls down and tries to hold or take me down," Haberkorn told the Daily News. "She's clearly drunk."
"What are you doing? You're throwing a woman on the floor," Cooke's boyfriend accused Haberkorn, the video shows.
"I didn't f---ing touch her," he responded.
Haberkorn was left bleeding from two cuts on the right side of his head from Cooke's blows.
Thomas said she went to confront Cooke, and the socialite told her, "Why don't you use your money to get a nose job?"
Cooke and her boyfriend ran off after the confrontation. Haberkorn didn't know who she was but got her name from restaurant workers, he says.
Cooke, who answered the door to her Upper East Side apartment in gray pajamas, denied the whole incident to a Daily News reporter and said she was home on New Year's Eve. But her finger was in a sling and hours later she turned herself in at the 19th precinct staionhouse for questioning, police said. She also planned to file a cross-complaint against Haberkorn, a source said.
"There's nothing that happened on New Year's Eve," she told The News. "I was here in my apartment."
She said she got her finger stuck in a cab door and dislocated it.
"I don't know what you're talking about," she added, before closing the door on a reporter. "I really don't want my picture taken."
Haberkorn, his mom and one daughter are Jewish, but Thomas and her three daughters are not.
"We're trying to teach our kids that just because you come from a certain area, you can't behave any way you want," he told The News. "It was disgusting behavior by a spoiled brat."
Back in 2007, Cooke sued the executors of her father's estate for $275 million, claiming that her $50,000 a year allowance wasn't enough. Her dad left behind an estate worth $825 million.
Jack Kent Cooke, a lawyer, died in 1997. He wanted the Washington football team he owned to go to his son, John Kent Cooke, but the franchise went to businessman Daniel Snyder for a record $800 million.
A controversy over the team's name brewed for decades with people saying it is offensive to Native Americans, and then exploded into the public consciousness in recent years as more than 100 organizations have called for a name change.
©2018 New York Daily News. Distributed by Tribune News Service.