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2 employees of Va. behavioral center charged in teen patient’s injury

UPDATE 10/3/2018: William P. Herndon was found not guilty in September.

WASHINGTON — A teenager was hurt and two employees are charged at a Loudoun County behavioral center where, last February, two other employees were charged in connection with the death of a teen.

An investigation found that a 16-year-old girl from Woodbridge, Virginia, was hurt on June 11 after she was incorrectly restrained by Stephen S. Holmes, 53, of West Virginia, Loudoun County officials said in a news release.

Holmes is an employee of the North Spring Behavioral Healthcare in Leesburg.

Nurse Kara L. Mueller, 45, of Lovettsville, failed to intervene in the restraint of the victim, officials said.

Holmes is charged with malicious wounding and cruelty and injuries to a child. Mueller faces charges of cruelty and injuries to a child.

Last November, a teenage boy died at the facility, and two employees were charged in connection to the death.

Nurse Melanie A. Lewis, 47, of Stephens City, Virginia, was charged Feb. 8 with involuntary manslaughter in the death, according to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office.

William P. Herndon, 47, of Martinsburg, West Virginia, was indicted in January on charges of involuntary manslaughter.

Investigators found that Herndon, a mental health technician at the facility, restrained the boy, and that Lewis failed to intervene when the restraint was incorrectly administered. The Office of the Medical Examiner concluded the boy died from positional asphyxiation.


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