A South Jersey socialite on vacation in South Beach was jumped by 10 prostitutes who thought she was selling her goodies on their turf.
The attack on Anna Burgese took place Jan. 19 at the plush, five-star W Hotel — and now Burgese is suing the hotel for millions.
According to a report in the Miami Herald, Burgese was minding her own business when as many as 10 prostitutes ganged up on her in the W Hotel lobby.
The petite mom, who is 5-foot-1 and 105 lbs., was tackled to the ground and suffered a scrape on her knee and a bloody lip, according to the police report obtained by The Miami Herald.
Instead of helping her to catch the hookers, Burgese claims that the “prostitute-friendly” hotel hailed cabs for the women to aid in their escape.
The W, owned by Starwood Hotels & Resorts, is one of South Beach’s most exclusive and trendiest hotels. Rooms range from $449 to more than $5,000 a night. A spokesman for the hotel chain had no comment, citing the pending litigation.
Burgese, 34, and her husband, Joseph Burgese, 50, of Medford, N.J., have been patrons of the hotel for years, visiting so often they keep their Rolls Royce parked there, according to their lawyer, Lance Rogers of Philadelphia.
“They’ve spent thousands and thousands of dollars at this hotel,’’ Rogers said. The couple is on a cruise off the coast of Italy and could not be reached.
In the suit, filed last week, Burgese claims that the assault was unprovoked and that the prostitutes threw her face-first against a stone wall in front of hotel employees. Her husband, who was on crutches, had been a few steps ahead of her when the attack began. He fought the women off with his crutches, Rogers said.
Miami Beach police apparently weren’t surprised, Rogers said.
“They told her that the women were hookers who were likely drunk or on drugs and mistakenly thought Anna was a prostitute,’’ the lawyer said.
Luxury hotels on Miami Beach have long been known to partner with so-called high class “escorts” who share a part of their healthy profits with the hotel staff.
“It’s just the nature of the beast. You’re going to have prostitution anywhere that you have money,” Miami Beach police spokesman Bobby Hernandez told the Miami Herald. The escort trade is so lucrative and plentiful that Yelp has a category for rating Miami hookers.
Burgese told police that a hotel employee knew one of the women, but the employee later told police he couldn’t identify any of the girls.
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Photo: Andre Flewellen / For The Miami Herald