Briana M. Veurink, a 31-year-old woman from Algonquin, Illinois, has been found guilty of two counts of aggravated battery after kicking a pregnant nurse in the stomach while being treated at Northwestern Medicine McHenry Hospital.
Why Did She Kick a Pregnant Nurse?
According to McHenry County Judge James Cowlin, Veurink was receiving treatment at Northwestern Medicine McHenry Hospital on February 17, 2021 after her estranged husband said she was making statements that she was going to harm herself and her children. These concerning statements were allegedly made after Veurink purposefully crashed her car into her estranged husband’s car earlier in the day.
While Veurink was being evaluated in the Emergency Department, Veurink was told she needed to remove her clothes and shoes. When a pregnant nurse attempted to remove Veurink’s boots for her, Veurink kicked the nurse in the abdomen. Veurink was told that the nurse was pregnant and she proceeded to kick the nurse again anyway, said Cowlin.
The unborn baby was later examined and found to be unharmed by the incident.
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Trial Details and Attorney Statements
During the trial, Judge Cowlin stated there was testimony claiming that either Veurink’s estranged husband or a police officer signed papers to have Veurink involuntarily committed. Veurink’s attorney, Thomas Carroll, argued that no such committal papers were ever produced and therefore, Veurink had the right to refuse treatment while in the hospital.
Carroll also claimed that the Emergency Department nurses “were harsh” with Veurink, that Veurink did not know the nurse was pregnant, and that she “did not hurt (the nurse) on purpose”. Carroll argued that Veurink did not intentionally kick the nurse and that she was simply trying to get out of bed.
Carroll also stated during the trial that Veurink was “having a mental breakdown”, but that her comments were misconstrued and she did not have real intentions to harm herself or her children.
Prosecutors said that the nurse was visibly pregnant and that Veurink intentionally kicked her in the stomach with the intent to cause harm.
On April 6, 2023, Veurink was found guilty of two counts of aggravated battery, a Class 3 felony. Sentences for aggravated battery can range from probation to up to five years in prison.
Veurink’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for June 15, 2023.