Preening preppy’s incredible big lie before jail stretch
- Last Updated: 1:14 PM, February 6, 2013
- Posted: 3:02 AM, February 6, 2013
A “pretentious” Manhattan socialite hosted a swanky, “black tie optional” bash in January — where he sipped champagne with his fabulous friends and boasted of an upcoming years-long vacation to Europe he was about take.
Tabber Benedict bellied up to the bar at Chelsea’s Bungalow 8 — with a woman on his arm — and bent his friends’ ears about the planned jaunt and all the places he was going to visit.
ANDREW TOTH/ PatrickMcMullan.com
But the finance lawyer was hiding the real, sinister reason he was saying his farewells.
He was going to prison for nearly killing a man.
About two years ago, the West Village denizen slammed his SUV into a Long Island dad after a night of hard partying in the Hamptons — and left his victim for dead, records show.
The Jan. 24 soiree was just four days before he was sentenced to as many as 10 years in the clink.
“He lied to everybody about going to Europe,” one of his friends said.
But throughout the party — which began at 11 pm — Benedict, 35, played it cool, some of the 150 attendees said.
The socialite, who often appears impeccably dressed at charity events, was recently featured in a New York Observer story about “Gatsbabies” — described as “preening prepsters” who “lure ladies, lucre and limelight” as a lifestyle.
“People look at me and they’re like, ‘That spoiled prick,’” Benedict, who says his financial law firm handled $25 billion in transactions, told the paper.
The scenesters scored the space at Bungalow 8 for free, because they know a woman who runs the door at the club, attendees said.
It wasn’t until later that one friend “heard that [Benedict] was making something up” and that only a few people “did know the truth.”
The truth was that Benedict was partying at a friend’s house in the Hamptons on July 4, 2011 when his girlfriend demanded he come see her in Manhattan, his lawyer said.
Benedict took to the road at 8 a.m. with a .28 blood-alcohol reading — more than three times over the legal limit, law enforcement sources said.
While driving along Montauk Highway in East Quogue, Benedict drunkenly plowed his GMC Acadia in to Steven Dorn, 45, a high school teacher and father of three daughters who was cycling, court records state.
The “Gatsbaby” then fled the scene as the dad lay severely injured along the highway, court records show.
Two other drivers on the road — identified as Bernic Daly and his uncle John Daly, who were in separate cars — sped up to Benedict and blocked his SUV so he would stop, law enforcement sources said.