Manhattan Socialite "Choked" Her Sober Coach

By McCarton Ackerman 12/20/12

A real estate heiress is being sued for beating up the woman paid to help her with her "issues."

Joselyn Wohl, left, the alleged attacker
Photo via

Maybe this is why sober coaches are often paid thousands of dollars a day. Sober companion Heather McKean claims she was choked and thrown down a flight of stairs in an altercation with Manhattan real estate heiress Joselyn Wohl, who had been working with McKean for over a year. The blowout took place at the swanky Southampton home of Larry Wohl, Joselyn Wohl's father and NYC real estate mogul, where McKean had been hired as a live-in companion. She's now filed a lawsuit in Manhattan Civil Supreme Court against the Wohl family—Joselyn, her father and her mother, Denise—for not taking action to safeguard against the "violent propensities" of the socialite. "She was hired by the Wohls, Denise and Larry, to spend time with her daughter, who obviously had some issues," said her lawyer Bryan Swerling. "One day Joselyn made up her mind she didn't want Heather around anymore and attacked her on the stairwell and yanked her down the stairs." McKean managed to free herself from Wohl's attack and locked herself in a room, where she then called police. Southampton cops took Wohl into custody, but never formally charged her with a crime. Swerling said that McKean will need to have surgery as a result of back and knee injuries suffered in the attack. She is also suing her employer, Cerberus Life Management, for unspecified damages.

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McCarton Ackerman is a freelance writer and editor living in Portland, Oregon. He has been a contributor for The Fix since October 2011, writing on a wide range of topics ranging from medical marijuana in Colorado to the world's sexiest drug smugglers. Follow him on Linkedin and Twitter.