Jackie Kennedy Judo Flips A Photographer – 1969
Former first lady Jackie Kennedy Onassis didn’t take kindly to being hounded by photographers. You think the modern celebrities get angry with paparazzi? Not as mad as Jackie got on October 5, 1969 when she demonstrated her displeasure to New York Daily News photographer Mel Finkelstein by taking him down unexpectedly.
As photographers were clicking away as Jackie was exiting a movie, she walked up to Finkelstein and without warning, judo flipped him. Finkelstein, who was of average height and weight, later said he was completely caught off guard. If a celebrity did this today to a photographer, you know there would be a major lawsuit. Jackie claimed he slipped! Finkelstein did not pursue the matter in court.
The news caption photo reads:
10/5/69 New York – New York Daily News photographer Mel Finkelstein sprawls on pavement as Mrs. Jacqueline Onassis walks pass (sic) after flipping the photographer with a judo trick upon leaving a local screening of the film “I am Curious (Yellow)” here 10/5. Finkelstein’s opinion of Mrs. Onassis afterwards was “That girl can handle herself.” Copyright 1969 by News Syndicate Co. Inc. UPI Telephoto