Charges Dropped Against Nurse Accused of Treating Newborn Roughly

Amanda Burke was accused of slamming baby face down into bassinet in ICU
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 13, 2023 2:50 PM CDT
Updated Mar 25, 2024 5:12 PM CDT
UPDATE Mar 25, 2024 5:12 PM CDT

Charges against a Long Island nurse accused of slamming a newborn baby boy face down in a bassinet in an intensive care unit were dropped on Monday, the day her trial was due to begin. Amanda Burke was fired hours after the incident last year, but state investigators said her rough treatment of the 2-day-old was "alleged simple negligence," not "gross negligence," and did not amount to professional misconduct, NBC New York reports. Prosecutors said that after the ruling from state licensing officials, they could not prove the charge of endangering the welfare of a child "beyond a reasonable doubt at trial." Robert Gottlieb, Burke's attorney, said that the baby was not harmed in any way and that the prosecution was "disgraceful."

Apr 13, 2023 2:50 PM CDT

A Long Island nurse who was recorded allegedly treating a newborn baby roughly was arrested Wednesday and charged with endangering the welfare of a minor. Prosecutors say Amanda Burke, 29, was fired within hours of the alleged incident on Feb. 6 in the neonatal intensive care unit at Good Samaritan Hospital, NBC News reports. Father Fidel Sinclair said he was filming his 2-day-old son Nikko through a nursery window and was shocked to see the nurse apparently slam the crying boy face down in a bassinet.

"Burke approached the newborn while he was lying in a bassinet, lifted him up, quickly flipped him over, and violently slammed him face down in the bassinet," prosecutors said. Nikko's mother, Consuelo Saravia, said she confronted Burke after seeing the video, and the nurse said, "Oh no, if you think I mishandled him or anything, I'm sorry." They reported Burke to hospital authorities, who said "swift and immediate action was taken" after an internal investigation.

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"The allegations against this defendant, who is someone entrusted with the care of our most vulnerable citizens, are truly disturbing," Suffolk County District Attorney Raymond A. Tierney said in a news release. Burke's lawyer says the baby was not injured and charges should not have been filed. "Amanda has always been an exceptional and compassionate nurse," Robert Gottlieb said, per PIX11. "She would never do anything to harm an infant under her care and we are sure the evidence gathered will show that." (More nurses stories.)

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