Skip to comments.Exclusive: RFK's Son Arrested in Westchester Hospital Maternity Unit Clash, Police Say
Posted on 02/24/2012 8:11:38 PM PST by Hunton Peck
The son of Robert F. Kennedy has been charged with harassment and endangering the welfare of a child for allegedly clashing with two nurses who tried to stop him from taking his 2-day-old baby boy from a Westchester maternity unit, NBC New York has learned.
According to a Mount Kisco, N.Y. police report obtained by NBC New York, Douglas Kennedy, 44, took his baby from the newborn unit of Northern Westchester Hospital on Jan. 7, against the instructions of hospital staff who told him the infant needed to stay there. The arrest was on misdemeanor charges.
Kennedy and his wife, Molly, disputed the accusations in a statement to NBC New York, saying "these allegations are absurd."
The nurse in charge of the unit, Anna Margaret Lane, said in a deposition that Kennedy wanted to take the child "to get fresh air" that evening. As he tried to leave, he was accompanied by a doctor from the hospital's emergency room, identified in court papers as "Dr. Haydock," later determined to be Dr. Timothy Haydock, a longtime family friend.
While the nursing staff sought to get Kennedy to return the baby to his bassinet, Haydock reportedly encouraged Kennedy to walk with the baby by telling nurses that he was with him, according to Lane's deposition.
Kennedy ignored the pleas of the nursing staff and carried the newborn -- identified in court papers as "B.K." -- to the elevator, police said. As the nursing staff tried to calm him and dissuade him from leaving the hospital, Kennedy turned and walked toward a stairwell leading to the outside of the hospital.
Lane blocked the doorway, "placing both hands on the doorknob" to prevent Kennedy from leaving, police said. Kennedy grabbed the nurse by her left wrist and twisted it to that he could pass into the stairwell, police said.
The baby's head "began to move from side to side, and in an attempt to stabilize the baby's head, nurse Cari Maleman Luciano reached toward the infant's head," police said.
"Instinctively as a nurse, I raised both my arms toward the neck of the baby to steady the violent shaking of the baby's head and neck," Luciano told investigators in a deposition.
While holding the child in his right arm, Kennedy kicked Luciano in the pelvis with his right foot, knocking her backward onto the floor, police said.
As he did this, Kennedy fell onto the floor with the baby in his arms. Kennedy then got up and ran "down the stairs with the infant until he was stopped by security and escorted back to the infant's room," the police report said.
The police report did not say whether the infant was harmed in the altercation.
The statement to NBC New York from Kennedy and his wife said there was no crime committed.
"The nurse had no right to attempt to grab our child out of his father's arms and I, Douglas, was shocked and appalled when she did so," the statement said.
Haydock said in a statement to NBC New York that Kennedy, whom he has known for more than 40 years, was not putting his healthy baby at risk by seeking to take him for a walk outside.
"I witnessed the incident and I can state unequivocally that the nurses were the only aggressors," he said. "To charge Mr. Kennedy with a crime is simply incomprehensible to me."
Kennedy is the 10th child of Robert F. and Ethel Kennedy. He and Molly have four children.
A Brown University graduate, Kennedy started his journalism career with The New York Post and most recently worked as a general assignment reporter and bi-monthly news program host for Fox News.
No Douglas is #10 born March, 1967 he was only a little than a year old when his dad died. His sister, Rory, is the youngest. I can remember when she was born and people thought it was sweet Ethel chose that name for her. She was the one getting married that weekend JFk, Jr. stupidly decided to fly a single engine cessna over water in the dark when he wasn’t experienced enough to do so. Even if dad had a valid reason for wanting to take son home, kicking a nurse is way out of line and he should do time for it. Too bad. He seemed like one of the few decent ones in that family.
Had a very similar "run-in" with a nurse here in Germany regarding the release of our first-born. They had no objection to our walking out of the hospital with the baby in our arms, but insisted that we couldn't legally drive the baby home without a "registered" babyseat.
Oh I would say they got it about 100 years ago. That fake doc was an ER board cert person not an OB. He may not even work in that ER. If he did he is in for a lot of medical board action.
I’m sure the nurses are following the hospital’s policy, which is in place for their protection against lawsuits. What if Mr. Kennedy left the hospital with the infant without a medical escort and then dropped the infant, causing serious injury or even death. Who do you think would get blame?
Also, there are many unanswered questions in the story. Was Kennedy acting irrational or under the influence of something, which alarmed the nurses? Was the child in the hospital for tests or extra medical treatment, since most hospitals let the mother and infant go home the next day after giving birth? Where was his wife while this was taking place?
Just my opinion: I always thought he was a dull reporter on Fox-—wooden and monotone, hired for his name and not his talent. Hello, Chelsea Clinton.
I'm with you.
God bless the doctor for allowing us to leave with our baby the following morning, born at 7:30PM the previous evening, even though he had young ones waiting at home one precious Christmas morning over two decades ago.
The ladies' auxiliary had made HUGE red stockings for us to carry our little "gifts" home!
He kicked the nurse because there was no body of water to drown her in.
Anyone who thinks otherwise is extremely naive, not to mention lucky to have missed the teaching moment.
Indeed I would go further. They are control freaks and you effectively have no rights in a hospital. Do it their way or else. Or else they call security which always takes their side; and if a child is involved they can immediately issue an opinion by a doctor that the child is at risk -- merely at risk of abuse, and then the child is THEIRS. Try to leave or stand on any of your so-called rights, and you will be taught an unforgettable lesson.
The only measure that might possibly work is to announce that you will not pay the bill if they do not let you leave. But you have to say it nicely to somebody way up on the food chain.
This guy is a member of the Clan Drunkennedy, so he was probably out of line before he kicked the nurse. Still, if you want to experience something you can tell your great-grandchildren in a PTSD cold sweat, try exercising your parental rights in a hospital maternity ward. Go ahead, make your family a legend.
Sorry but they do.
Theyre not my legal guardian, and theyre certainly not the legal guardian of my children
All it takes is the stroke of a pen by a medical practitioner. You are effectively non compos mentis and your child effectively a ward of the state. I'm not talking abstract, just real world. Try it. It will unseal your eyes.
Perhaps the hospital was going to run a drug test on the baby.....
...”Im more interested in knowing exactly why he couldnt take his child in the first place.Hospitals now refuse to let you take your newborn unless you allow them to administer immunizations.Many people think these contribute to autism.Is that the possible reason?Kennedys have never been my favorite people but I want to know more before condeming him”...
I am thinking the government mandated immunizations had something to do with this. Is it possible a Kennedy has responded to a “Nanny State” mandate forced upon hospitals?
And if Kennedy had manged to get the baby out of the hospital and he was drunk and the baby was injured or killed, you damn well better believe the mother would scream like a banshee and demand to know, “Why the hell did you let him take my baby out of the hospital. The man’s a Kennedy!”
I know that is true, but he didn’t say he was withdrawing the baby from their care, just taking a walk. You can’t just “take a walk” outside while the baby is under the care of the hospital. The hospital is still responsible for the child and has a say. If he was taking the child from their care, I’d back him up 100%, but just walking outside, possibly endangering the child’s life? No.
Im more interested in knowing exactly why he couldnt take his child in the first place.
Absolutely no one has the right to prevent a father or mother from the right to remove their child from any place, time or for any reason.
All of this hoopla about human rights....that includes babies doesn’t it? You would think so but on this matter.....crickets chirping.
As a “kicker” to this story I hate all of the Kennedy clan.
Your forget to mention sexual harassment and rape.
“Stand By Your Kennedy, they are all gods you know.”
...”First it was the social security number that was mandatory in a hospital; now its immunizations. The nazification of the U.S.A. and health care system is almost complete”...
Agreed! Let’s do not let our resentment of the harm the Kennedy’s have done to this country fall on all of them. Perhaps some are beginning to understand that they do not want to live in a communistic society. Let’s also understand that rebellion towards corruption often comes from the “inside.” It is quite clear that the hospital was keeping him from claiming his child..Why else would he have chosen to come and take the baby by force? Much more needs to be known about this.
Did they give him a breathalizer test?
Do you know who I am? /s
At last a sensible and reasonable statement.
For a while I thought I was visiting “George Noory’s Wacko to Wacko AM” radio show.
Women do have a tendency to become hysterical around Kennedy men. You might end up drowned, raped or murdered in cold blood. I’ll stick with the nurses on this one.
Unusual? Sounds like he was drunk. That is a kennedy norm, not unusual.
I wonder how many are supporting this simply because he's a Kennedy?
Would you allow a nurse to tell you that you couldn't take your child out for a walk while accompanied by a doctor?
I think most of us assume, since he IS a kennedy, that he was drunk. Would you let a drunk walk out of the hospital with a newborn infant? And presumably drive off? Legally, the baby belongs to the mother who gave birth, she was still in the hospital and not going anywhere. They were not checking out.
And why was an ER doc on the maternity floor have any sway over anyone? Was he even an ER doc at that hospital?
Please, this whole story reeks of booze.
And of course the reporter can’t seem to find the words ...
Update, Tioga: Kennedy’s been arrested. So much for those nasty nurses!
I meant to say on child endangerment charges.
I DID read the whole story. I see that Kennedy has been arrested as he should have been. I stand by my previous comment regarding his actions 100%.
To call me "hysterical" because I posted an opinion, and to call the alert nurses "hysterical" because they were doing their medical duty as they saw it at the moment says a lot more about you than it does about us. If male nurses were involved, would you refer to them as "hysterical", also?
Update? The whole article is based on his arrest.
The whole kennedy clan has issues.......rape, DUI, DWI, murder....hell, they are a danger to all of us.
That is not the issue: the issue was the hospital’s assertion of rights superior to those of the parents over the child. The story reflects the increasingly totalitarian nature of our society.
And it is as simple as that! If charges are to be filed, how about attempted kidnapping by the nurse that was trying to grab the baby?
Yes, I know. I made a mistake.
A nurse can’t someone mentally incompetant, on the fly, for someone who is not even a patient. Show me where the law allows that.
One more good reason to have children at home, not at the place for sick people.
I really wish people would read my posts more carefully so I don't have to do a remedial lesson. FYI the law not only allows but requires medical practitioners to report all potential as well as actual cases of child abuse, and that goes for nurses. And they will do it at the drop of a pin. It covers their flanks legally and is virtually 100% riskfree for them.
As for finding mental incompetence, they don't have to FIND it, they need only report that they suspect it or consider it possible, and the victim is treated accordingly, being arrested, confined, restricted, manhandled, cuffed and/or hauled into court as the case may be. The benefit of the doubt goes to the medical practitioner/hospital/accuser who is presumed to be erring, if at all, on the side of caution.
Does that clear it up for you any?
ps: Again, not defending a Kennedy, particularly one who kicked a nurse who was almost certainly following reasonable procedures. (A non-Kennedy would have been in court the next morning, all scuffed and lacerated by hospital security.)
Douglas was an infant when his father was assassinated. His younger sister, Rory, was born after her father was killed.
Lol. I should clarify. Doc is not opposed to immunizations altogether. She is opposed to giving them when a baby is barely out of the womb.
Not joking. As for the misplaced order, our pediatrician took care of it within minutes. The nurses took at least five more hours to finish the paperwork. They were very fortunate that hubby did not show up until I told him they were done. There would have been a scene. As it was, I think we had the second shift nurse take over. She was very apologetic. You have no idea how unorganized this department was. I’ve written about our bad experiences. We have had wonderful nurses at other hospitals. We have 10 children. We have seen a lot of good and bad over the years.
And so easily offended too.
We've experienced both. The home delivery was so much more harmonious than the hospital, even tho the doctor made a special trip on Christmas morning to sign off for us to leave. So kind.
When we wanted to research home births, only two doctors in the area would do it at the time ~ Dr. Repaire & Doctor Butcher (no kidding.) Both were very good, but we went with Repaire!
How is this only a misdemeanor?
My question exactly?
It’s a felony to assault a nurse in NY
Why didn’t the doctor friend write an order “OK to take infant outside for fresh air” or a “discharge to home”
If he took the baby without an order the nurse would lose her job and because he is a “Kennedy” she would probably lose her license.
Seems to me the Kennedy spin doctors are at work here. Hope the nurses have a good lawyer.
‘And so easily offended too.’
How dare you say that! That’s offensive to women. ;)
Midwives are awesome.
“I really wish people would read my posts more carefully so I don’t have to do a remedial lesson.”
Oh, come off it. In the context of this situation, which is what everyone is discussing, I read your comment to be defending the behavior of the nurses, by asserting that they had the authority to override Mr. Kennedy (and his child’s) civil rights.
Now, you seem to be asserting something else, and in fact your further explanation seems to prove my point. After all, the nurses did not do what you are claiming they should have done, which is report their concerns to the proper authorities, but instead took it upon themselves to act outside their authority and outside the law.
If you think that nurses can take it upon themselves to falsely imprison anyone, especially a NON-PATIENT, and then cover themselves by asserting mental incompetence after the fact, then offer up some evidence of that, because I don’t believe it.
Here’s a link to a legal resource discussing the issue of false imprisonment and hospitals:
Here’s another one that is warning nursing professionals of the legal risks associated with these issues:
Nowhere in those resources do I see it asserted that simply thinking someone might not be mentally fit gives nurses a valid defense against those claims. Besides which, in this case, I don’t see the hospital staff ever claiming that Mr. Kennedy was incompetent, which they surely would have if they thought it would be such an airtight defense against liability, as you are asserting.
Worked? Seems he is unemployed.
by seeking to take him for a walk outside
The baby walks?
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Now THAT’S funny!
It will be interesting to see how this case is resolved. Keep in mind: no one twisted Kennedy’s arm and forced his wife to give birth in that hospital. The hospital, like any other private business, has the right to operate as it chooses. When you choose to go to a hospital you are required to sign many documents upon entry, which I assume are LEGAL. It’s possible that Kennedy agreed beforehand to all of the actions the nurses took and doesn’t realize it because he never read the fine print. If the Kennedys didn’t want to follow their policies they should have had a home birth or chosen a different hospital.
Not a sir.