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Mr. Tumelty represented Helena Hendricks, who was charged with first degree murder in Atlantic County Superior Court. The defendant faced a number of additional charges, including armed robbery, conspiracy and possession of a handgun for an unlawful purpose. At the conclusion of a jury trial that lasted three weeks, the defendant was found "not guilty" of all charges.

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Atlantic City NJ Nurse Suspended, Accused of Assaulting Autistic Boy with Hypodermic Needle

South Jersey Criminal Defense LawyersAn Atlantic City nurse could face criminal charges after she was allegedly caught using a hypodermic needle to assault an autistic boy who was under her care.

Naomi Derrick is a registered nurse (RN) who worked in the psychiatric unit at AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center in Atlantic City, New Jersey. On May 15, 2016, she was in charge of caring for a 10-year-old boy who suffered from autism. According to Atlantic County officials, Derrick committed a violent assault against the patient when she stabbed him with a needle multiple times.

The young victim reportedly suffered stab wounds to his thigh, upper arm, feet, hand, and kneecaps. It is believed by law enforcement that Derrick stabbed the boy at least six times. She also allegedly committed other violent acts, including bending the boy’s finger back, stomping on his foot with her shoe, and knocking him out of a chair.

Derrick was allegedly angry at the child and wanted to control his behavior. According to nursing officials, Derrick threatened to use the hypodermic needle on the victim if he failed to behave properly. Witnesses indicated that Derrick said she would “give him the needle.”

Derrick’s assault was reportedly witnessed by other workers at the Atlantic City hospital. Additionally, there is reportedly videotape evidence of Derrick stabbing the boy with a hypodermic needle.

NJ Nursing License Suspended during Criminal Investigation

Acting New Jersey Attorney General Christopher Porrino recently announced that state officials have reached an agreement with Derrick that will prevent her from continuing to work as a nurse while prosecutors investigate the allegations and as long as criminal charges are pending in the case. Derrick reportedly agreed to surrender her nursing license for the time being. This means that Derrick will not have access to patients going forward.

Although Derrick has not yet been criminally charged in the case, it was determined by NJ state authorities that it would be inappropriate for her to continue practicing as a nurse while she has been accused of committing gross negligence and professional misconduct.

While speaking to the media about Derrick’s alleged criminal behavior, Porrino emphasized that NJ authorities believe that Derrick “used her position of authority to bully and assault” the developmentally disabled victim.

It is important to note that Derrick’s decision to surrender her nursing license does not include any admission of guilt on her part. The Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office will ultimately determine whether criminal charges for aggravated assault and other violent crimes will be filed against the Atlantic City nurse.

For additional information about this case, read the article, “New Jersey Nurse Caught on Tape Stabbing Autistic Boy with Needle.”


If you or a loved one has been charged with aggravated assault or any other violent criminal offense in New Jersey, you face severe penalties. That’s why it is very important for you to talk to a qualified criminal defense attorney immediately. Contact John W. Tumelty now for a free consultation.

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