Watch CBS News

EXCLUSIVE: UWS Family Tells Of Alleged Altercation With 'Enraged' Diva Patti LaBelle

NEW YORK (CBS 2) -- An encounter with Patti LaBelle has struck a sour note for one Upper West Side family. They are suing the singer for assaulting their 18-month-old baby.

The family spoke exclusively to CBS 2's Kathryn Brown on Tuesday.

LaBelle's "New Attitude" helped make her famous, but that "attitude" now has the disco diva in hot water.

"She became … enraged," Roseanna Monk said.

Monk said she was in the lobby of her Upper West Side apartment building last year with her husband, and daughter, Genevieve, who was then a year and a half old, when LaBelle, who also lived there, walked in and went on a furious rampage.

"One thing I remember her saying is 'I hope you have a terrible life.' And I heard a lot of f-words," Monk said.

Roseanna, who was also pregnant at the time, said LaBelle was angry that Genevieve was standing by the lobby door, and launched into a tirade of curse words. And she said at one point the singer, who's famous for her moves, doused her with bottled water and even lunged at her.

"She was trying to come get me. Her people had to literally hold her back," Monk said.

The Monks said the whole ordeal terrified their daughter.

"I can't begin to describe the sheer -- just -- terror and state that she was in," Kevin Monk said.

The Monks are now suing LaBelle, alleging the entire family suffered emotional distress, especially Genevieve.

"As a parent, [it was] very upsetting!" Roseanna Monk said.

This isn't LaBelle's first dust-up with the law. Over the summer, two bodyguards were arrested and charged with assaulting a West Point cadet at a Houston airport.

The Monk family said the point of the lawsuit is to teach LaBelle a lesson, and not profit financially. They said they'll donate any money they're awarded to a children's cancer charity.

Brown reached out to LaBelle's attorney numerous times Tuesday for comment, but was told she was unavailable.

Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.