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JLeslie's avatar

Do you think Douglas Kennedy should be tried and convicted for endangering a child?

Asked by JLeslie (59396points) November 1st, 2012

You probably saw the headlines where Douglas Kennedy took his newborn out of the hospital. Supposedly he hurt a nurse or two on his way out. What I don’t understand is why is it endangering a child to take the baby out of the hospital if the baby is a normal healthy child? Isn’t the baby going home in a day or two anyway? Maybe I am missing something.

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36 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

Read the details; there is protocol for protecting new-borns from mishandling and worse, abductions. If a nurse says, “Please stop.” Why not stop?

Actual trial specifics

SpatzieLover's avatar

Did you see the video of this @JLeslie?

He not only endagered the life of the newborn, but acted like an ass in public by shoving nurses (whom I believe can sue for harrassment).

Besides that, if he were (gasp) a black male that did this, he’d be in jail. His name helped him here.

When you give birth, mama & baby get a bracelet that either the nurses read off to check for accuracy, or scan. Dads don’t get a bracelet. Therefore, dad’s aren’t allowed to remove baby from hospital. The maternity ward has the rules posted at the entrance/exit, and in each room.

Douglas Kennedy can cry foul all he wants. He knew damn well what the rules are. His conduct toward the nurses was inexcusable.

JLeslie's avatar

@SpatzieLover I don’t disagree about how he treated the nurses, definitely unnacceptable. Somewhere between harrassment and assault I would say. Not ok.

tom_g's avatar

Is this how it works? If someone tries to abduct a baby, is the only thing keeping that from happening the nurses on the maternity ward? I always assumed it was a matter of pressing a button, and the entire hospital is locked down or something. Then, all the nurses would have to do would be to simply follow at a safe distance. I’m not sure exactly what this reveals other than a weak security system.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@tom_g I think in this case, it just happened that the nurses saw him & the baby go by, so they went after him. In the hospital I gave birth in, they have lock down (& did it once when I was in my room). I’m not certain if lock down works on elevators in all maternity wards, though.

tom_g's avatar

I’ll have to ask my wife. She works in maternity (lactation consultant). I’d like to think that if something happens, everyone isn’t just trying to wing it or grab the baby from someone’s arms. It would be nice if there was a plan in place in the event of an attempted abduction that involved lockdown and real security.

marinelife's avatar

Also, the nurses said the baby was inadequately dressed for the weather outdoors.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@tom_g I know a local hospital was unable to “lock” in a kidnapper. She made it out of the maternity ward without anyone seeing. They didn’t have lock down on other exits, by the time they figured out the infant was missing, she went out another floor stair exit and got away…until the police found her, that is.

JLeslie's avatar

He wasn’t abducting the baby, it is his baby. I understand there are protocols for removing a baby from the hospital, but to say he endangered the baby he would actually have to be endangering the baby. Even when someone steals a baby (God forbid) I am not sure it is endangerment, that is kidnapping. @marinelife brought up a point about the baby not being adequately dressed, but I don’t think the nurses were objecting to that. I also wonder if the nurses were afraid the baby was being abducted? Or, just trying to follow hospital procedure, as they should, but I would think there is a good chance they know he is the father; recognized him. So, he is not the same as a black male, or any male, as @SpatzieLover pointed out who a nurse might not recognize. Although, I do agree a black male might be treated differently through the entire fiasco from the actual event to the trial, etc. That might be why they did not do any lockdown if they have the capability at the hospital.

FYI: the links privded above I had trouble openong, but I watched some videos and googled a little more about the incident.

tom_g's avatar

@JLeslie: “He wasn’t abducting the baby, it is his baby.”

It’s not really his baby….yet. If you agree to go to a hospital, there are tons of things you are not allowed to do. Most people don’t even need to go to a hospital to give birth. But if they sign up for it, there are sacrifices they must make. One of them is that you must follow the protocol the hospital has about babies leaving/not leaving. Those nurses are responsible for the baby while the couple and baby is still staying at the hospital.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Leaving against hospital policy is the definition of infant endangerment. Was the mother carrying out the baby to take it home? No. Does an infant need “a breath of fresh air”? No.

Kennedy’s entire stance makes zero sense. This wasn’t his first time to a maternity ward. The rules are for everyone to follow, even elitists.

As far as the nursing staff is concerned, any person removing a baby from a hospital that isn’t the birth or adoptive mother is endangering or kidnapping a child.

zenvelo's avatar

Hospitals are very good at communicating all the security concerns and procedures to the parents. he knew this was wrong, and has no excuse. Hospitals have been doing this for 15 years!

gailcalled's avatar

This is the event caught on tape;

Kennedy scuffle

No ambivalence there.

JLeslie's avatar

The ABC links aren’t loading for me.

SpatzieLover's avatar

You may need to use a different browser @JLeslie. That’s the same video I posted above. It’s quite clear he was in the wrong. A nurse lands on the floor from him shoving her out of the elevator.

JLeslie's avatar

@SpatzieLover I saw that clip on a different site. As I said I agree he should be charged with harrassment or assault.

mazingerz88's avatar

Wait, why did he do this in the first place, what’s the rush?

gailcalled's avatar

He was charged months ago; the trial ended five days ago. Westchest court judge John Donohue says he will issue a verdict soon; he is still brooding.

marinelife's avatar

@JLeslie “I was trying to do anything so they would not leave the unit,” she said. Adamo cited safety concerns over the potential for Bo getting hurt or sick.

“The baby was not appropriately dressed,” she added.

Nanuet Patch

Coloma's avatar

Pffft…just another lunatic raising Arizona.
Yes, he should be charged, at the least, for the assault on the nursing staff.

JLeslie's avatar

Short clip I found with a discussion on the topic that more captures the arguments I was considering.

tom_g's avatar

^^ Ouch. That was a painful clip. Not sure if there were any arguments presented in that clip. They made a weak attempt at justifying their segment by pretending to play devil’s advocate, but didn’t put in the effort to lay out the argument. That “Dr.” Drew guy seemed to start to (“Pediatric hospitals through history did horrible things to their patients, and if someone spoke up earlier, maybe these kinds of weaknesses would have been exposed. Now, I’m not saying what he did was ok, but maybe he’s onto something. ”) Sigh. Really? If a hospital is doing something horrible, then become an advocate for changing the system. Call the cops. I don’t know, maybe not have your kid in the damn hospital next time around. I’m trying to figure out how pushing or kicking a nurse because they are following rules that you agreed to is doing anything revolutionary. Anyway, it was just a desperate attempt at tv attempting to manufacture controversy.

JLeslie's avatar

@tom_g I think Dr. Drew was actually on the side of the hospital in his own opinion, but playing devil’s advocate. I don’t think it was desperate at all, and I usually can’t stand most media BS. About not having the baby in the hospital. I think for the most part the new mother is in the hospital, unless the baby is ill in some way. The baby is just being observed, and being kept with the mother. No one anywhere has said it was ok to kick or push anyone, not Dr. Drew, not anyone I have seen, not even during the clip.

tom_g's avatar

@JLeslie – Of course he was on the side of the hospital. I am not saying that Dr. Drew was truly advocating it. I was calling out his half-assed “I need to come up with something to talk about here” comment about hospitals “through history…”. It’s not often that I’m exposed to these type of tv shows, so my comment was really about the show. Drew can tie his own shoes and probably feed himself. He’s not stupid. But he has to say dumb things to fill some time in a segment of that awful little show.

CWOTUS's avatar

Right. Give him a fair trial, and then hang him.

Do you understand the irony of what you say when you ask (in apparent good will): Do you think Douglas Kennedy should be tried and convicted [emphasis added] for endangering a child?

Cupcake's avatar

@JLeslie I just want to comment on your thought that the mother is the primary hospital patient and the newborn is just being observed.

There are actually several criteria that must be met for the baby (who is absolutely a patient, not just under observation) to go home… that vary some by hospital policy and state regulation.
– lab work finalized
– state/hospital screens complete
– car seat properly installed or proof of public transportation
– primary care physician identified and informed
– follow-up appointments made
– infant dressed and covered appropriately for the weather
– shaken baby video watched and pledge to not ever shake the baby signed
– discharge teaching done and signed
– parents demonstrate competence feeding and providing basic care

This is an off-the-top-of-my-head list for normal newborns… of course babies with any issues would have additional requirements.

Being tried for endangering a child is not unreasonable. He was improperly holding the baby (“head wobbling”), improperly transporting baby without permission and disregarding the hospital policies. The baby is a hospital inpatient and the father (who is a hospital visitor) must follow all proper protocol.

jca's avatar

If Kennedy is kicking nurses while holding a baby, that’s endangering the welfare of a child.

I am betting he uses his high-priced attorneys to get him off. It wouldn’t surprise me. He’s disgusting.

gailcalled's avatar

Robert Gottlieb, Kennedy’s defense attorney, has this to say, on Friday.

” Nurses in a maternity ward aggressively overreacted to a simple request from a son of the late Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, then tried to cover up their actions in hopes of “lining their pockets” with Kennedy money…”

” ‘It’s an embarrassment that two nurses would so blatantly lie,” Gottlieb said.”

Source the same as in my first link, at the top of the page.

SpatzieLover's avatar

I heard his atty. responses on TV today @gailcalled. What a bunch of BS….

Yep, maternity ward nurses have nothing better to do than conspire to take down a Kennedy and get some dough from him.

Somehow these ladies, between caring for one & two day old infants conspired to figure out some way to make this adult man run out of the hospital with his baby in January. Then, they made certain to rile him enough to get him to push them down and kick one of the nurses in the pelvis.

It’s too bad this case is only before a judge & not a jury.

gailcalled's avatar

@SpatzieLover: What’s your guess the Judge will decide? Probation and community service or some jail time? The video does make mincemeat of the lawyer’s arguments.

SpatzieLover's avatar

I’m guessing community service. <ergh!> I’m doubting any charges will stick to his record.

More than likely the Kennedy family makes large donations to the hospital, and possibly to the DA.

jca's avatar

I am willing to bet that as a rich Kennedy he does community service anyway. He’ll be in some soup kitchen or something and have the media there and make a big deal of it, and be done with it all.

flutherother's avatar

The baby was in the hospital’s care and Douglas Kennedy behaved like an asshole.

JLeslie's avatar

Ok, obviously the majority vote is he did endanger the child. Did the nurse try to reach out for the baby? To take the baby? It wasn’t clear to me.

SpatzieLover's avatar

On any of the videos I watched @JLeslie, (I saw two on TV…One of which had pretty clear images inside the elevator), it appeared the nurses/staff were demanding him to stop. I saw no one use any sort of force other than getting into & attempting to get into the elevator with him.

JLeslie's avatar

@SpatzieLover I have a problem with that for the hospital worker. I would think they would be advised not to get into an elevator with someone who is possibly kidnapping a baby? Keeping the staff safe is just as important as keeping the baby safe. Seems like they do need a better way to “sound the alarm” when something like this happens in that hospital. Unless they recognized him immediately, then maybe the staff felt relatively safe? I do wonder what the hospital advises their staff to do in this sort of situation.

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