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Douglas Kennedy acquitted in N.Y. hospital case

By Yon Pomrenze, CNN
November 21, 2012 -- Updated 1636 GMT (0036 HKT)
Douglas Kennedy was acquitted of harassment and child endangerment charges in an incident at a suburban New York City hospital.
Douglas Kennedy was acquitted of harassment and child endangerment charges in an incident at a suburban New York City hospital.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Kennedy had been accused of twisting one nurse's arm and kicking another nurse in January
  • He tried to leave the maternity ward of a suburban New York City hospital with his newborn son
  • The nurses' attorney could not be immediately reached for comment

New York (CNN) -- Douglas Kennedy, the son of the late Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, was acquitted Tuesday of harassment and child endangerment charges.

He had been accused of twisting a nurse's arm and kicking another nurse in January as he tried to leave the maternity ward of a suburban New York City hospital with his newborn son.

The incident was captured by a security camera at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco, about 40 miles north of New York City.

His attorneys had argued that Kennedy wanted to take his child out for some "fresh air" and that the staff had overreacted.

Nurses describe alleged assault

But one of the nurses, Cari Luciano, testified earlier that as Kennedy tried to get into the stairwell, his infant's head was being jostled, unsupported, in his arms. She said that she instinctively reached out to steady it when Kennedy kicked her squarely in the pelvis.

Nurse Marian Williams said she saw Kennedy kick Luciano with "such force" that it knocked her off her feet. Their attorney could not be immediately reached for comment regarding Tuesday's acquittal.

Kennedy is the youngest son of the former U.S. attorney general and U.S. senator, who was the younger brother of slain President John F. Kennedy.

Abusive or protective?

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