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Nurse arrested after allegedly slamming 2-day-old infant into a bassinet

Long Island hospital fires nurse accused of slamming newborn
Long Island hospital fires nurse accused of slamming newborn 00:38

A registered nurse formerly employed at a Long Island hospital has been arrested for allegedly lifting a two-day-old newborn from his bassinet and slamming him face-down back into it. 

The nurse, identified as Amanda Burke, was charged with endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor, said Suffolk County district attorney Raymond Tierney on Wednesday. However, the nurse's lawyer told CBS News the charges are "not justified by all the facts."   

Burke was an employee of Good Samaritan Hospital in West Islip, New York when the incident occurred on Feb. 6, 2023. 

An investigation into Burke's behavior found that the Holbrook, New York nurse was working in the hospital's neonatal intensive care unit and assigned to care for the two-day old. She approached the baby, lifted him and quickly flipped him over before she "violently slammed him" back into the bassinet, face-down, Tierney's office said in a statement announcing Burke's arrest. 

The incident was filmed by the infant's father, who was outside the nursery, Tierney said. The parents notified nursing staff, and Burke was directed to leave the hospital. She was fired hours later. 

As of Thursday morning, Burke's license as a registered nurse was still active, according to public records reviewed by CBS News. The district attorney's statement said that the office had informed relevant authorities of the charges against Burke. 

Burke surrendered herself to the Suffolk County Police Department on Wednesday morning. 

"The allegations against this defendant, who is someone entrusted with the care of our most vulnerable citizens, are truly disturbing," said Tierney. "I want to commend the members of the Suffolk County Police Department's Special Victims Unit for their hard work in this case, and together we will continue to fight to protect the rights and safety of all Suffolk County residents."

Burke's attorney, Robert C. Gottlieb, told CBS News in an emailed statement that "this case should never have resulted in criminal charges." 

"Amanda is an outstanding, exemplary, compassionate nurse who did not and would never do anything to endanger any infant or patient under her care," Gottlieb said. "The baby involved was not injured or ever placed in any danger of injury.  The District Attorney's statements are off base and not justified by all the facts that will come out in court." 

Gottlieb did not respond to a follow-up question about the district attorney's claim that Burke's actions were filmed. 

Burke's next court appearance is scheduled for May 2, 2023, where she will be arraigned. 

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