A Good Samaritan Hospital nurse was fired after video allegedly...

A Good Samaritan Hospital nurse was fired after video allegedly shows her slamming a newborn into a crib in February. Credit: John Roca

A state disciplinary office said it had closed its investigation into a Holbrook nurse, finding “simple negligence” but no professional misconduct or gross negligence after a grainy video that some say shows her throwing a newborn onto a bed in February at Good Samaritan University Hospital in West Islip.

Amanda Burke, 29, still faces a misdemeanor criminal charge of endangering the welfare of a child after Suffolk County prosecutors said she “violently slammed” a 2-day-old boy face down in the hospital nursery. The baby’s father recorded the Feb. 6 incident on video and immediately reported it to hospital staff.

Burke, who worked as a registered nurse in the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit, was fired the day after the alleged abuse was reported.

Prosecutors brought a single misdemeanor charge forward in April and notified the state Education Department’s Office of Professional Discipline to review the incident.

State officials said in a June 20 letter Burke’s actions “did not constitute professional misconduct” and closed the investigation, noting it was the “first alleged act of simple negligence.”

Suffolk County prosecutors said they were moving forward with the criminal case after a court hearing Wednesday, where attorneys discussed the state’s ruling. Burke pleaded not guilty May 16 and was released on her own recognizance. She is due back in court Aug. 30.

The state found the incident did not rise to gross negligence and said the law defines professional misconduct as, “Practicing the profession … with gross incompetence, gross negligence on a particular occasion or simple negligence on more than one occasion.”

Officials noted in the letter to Burke, “this is not an adjudication of simple negligence.”

Burke’s nursing license remains active through June 30, and no enforcement or disciplinary action is listed on her official state record, according to state records.

Burke’s Manhattan-based attorney, Robert C. Gottlieb, said Wednesday that criminal charges in the case should not have been filed and he hoped to resolve the case soon. The video was taken out of context, he said, and she never slammed the baby down.

“I fully expect them to consider the findings of the state and licensing agency and … this case can be resolved,” Gottlieb said. “ … there was never any crime here. I’m concerned because anyone who read the initial account jumped to erroneous conclusions. She is a wonderful nurse and our hope is that we can put this case behind her so she can get on with her career.”

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