Robert F. Kennedy's son charged over maternity ward clash with nurses

Douglas Kennedy, a son of Robert F. Kennedy and a reporter for Fox News, is facing charges related to an incident in which he clashed with two nurses who tried to stop him taking his newborn son for a walk outside a hospital maternity ward.

Kennedy and his wife, Melissa, have called the allegations "absurd."

Kennedy, 44, was charged with misdemeanor harassment and endangering the welfare of a child over the Jan. 7 argument, during which he allegedly grabbed one nurse by the wrist and kicked another in the pelvis, NBC New York revealed late Friday.

He was arraigned on the charges Thursday night.

Kennedy was attempting to take his son, his fifth child, for a walk "to get fresh air" outside Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco, N.Y., in the company of doctor and longtime family friend Timothy Haydock when nurse Anna Margaret Lane tried to stop him entering an elevator and then a stairwell.

Kennedy allegedly grabbed Lane by the wrist in an attempt to open a door to the stairwell, before allegedly kicking Cari Maleman Luciano as the nurse tried to grab the baby's head.

A statement from Kennedy and his wife disputed that account.

"The nurse had no right to attempt to grab our child out of his father's arms," the statement said, adding that Kennedy "was shocked and appalled when she did so."

Haydock had tried to calm the situation by telling the nurses he was with Kennedy. He told NBC, "I witnessed the incident and I can state unequivocally that the nurses were the only aggressors."

Roger Ailes, chairman and CEO of Fox News, on Sunday released a statement regarding the incident.

"I have known Douglas Kennedy, his wife and his family professionally and personally for over 15 years," Ailes said in a statement. "He tells the truth and his calm and gentle demeanor always impressed me. He is the definition of a great father and it is a role he cherishes over all others."

Ailes continued, "I support Douglas as do the independent eyewitness accounts of the event. It is unfortunate that what appears to be a father's defensive maneuver to protect his newborn baby has been twisted because of his famous name. In my view, the real moral of this story should be don't try to grab a baby from the arms of a loving father."

Haydock also released a statement, saying "to charge Mr. Kennedy with a crime is simply incomprehensible to me."

Newscore contributed to this report.