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Woman charged with burning child at Virginia hospital

Posted at 4:12 PM, Jul 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-15 18:41:19-04

NEW KENT COUNTY, Va. -- A former Cumberland Hospital for Children and Adolescents employee is facing a criminal charge for intentionally burning a disabled patient.

As CBS 6 first reported in February 2020, the hospital has been under criminal investigation for child abuse and neglect since October 17, 2017.

Stacey Burrell was indicted by a King William multi-jurisdictional grand jury on Wednesday.

She faces one felony count of malicious wounding.

Burrell intentionally poured hot water on a then 16-year-old Jackson Haddon on September 14, 2019, when Haddon was a patient at the hospital, his mother alleged.

Haddon, who is primarily non-verbal, was being treated for a brain injury he suffered as an infant from a child abuse incident caused by a non-family member.

His mom Shannon Haddon said the charge against Burrell was long overdue.

“For Jackson, he deserved that justice, you know, a long time ago,” Shannon Haddon said. “A lot of weight has been lifted off my shoulders, and hopefully, with Cumberland, and not just Miss Burrell, but with everyone that's involved in this case, you know, hopefully, we start making some leeway.”

Stacey Burrell

After the September 14, 2019, alleged incident, Haddon said she was told her son was accidentally burned in the shower. Someone at the hospital called her a month later to tell her otherwise.

“One of the Behavior Techs was on camera going in the break room and into the bathroom multiple times heating up water and pouring it on Jackson,” Haddon recalled learning during that phone call.

“Some of the things that I have found out through this process is, you know, it's heartbreaking,” Haddon said. “It's shocking how they would try to cover up what happened with Jackson. You know that's, that says a lot. I mean, if they would try to cover up a burn, that would be noticeable, what else are they going to cover up?”

A December 2019 investigation by the New Kent Department of Social Services determined the allegations were unfounded.

“I think they need better training or there needs to be an overhaul of many different departments and governing officials there in Virginia,” said Haddon.

“A lot of people knew what was going on at Cumberland and they still allowed it you know, from the CEO, all the way down to the front desk,” said Haddon. “I believe they all knew what was going on there.”

“If you had the opportunity to sit down in the same room as Stacey Burrell what would you say to her?” Problem Solver Laura French asked Haddon.

“I wish I knew why. Maybe one day she will want to tell me that. I mean, that's her choice,” said Haddon. “I'm not a hateful person. I'm hurt but I've been taught to forgive with my faith. We forgive those that cause harm you know. We don't forget, but in order to heal, we have to forgive.”

"I can confirm that the issue was promptly and thoroughly investigated, reported to authorities, and the employee was terminated,” Cumberland Hospital CEO Garrett Hamilton said last year when asked about the allegations.

Burrell is the second former employee to be criminally charged.

Former psychotherapist Mickey Harden was charged with sex crimes against a former patient. He was expected to plead guilty to one charge in February but died by suicide on the day of his plea hearing.

Anyone with additional information about these or other alleged crimes that may have occurred at Cumberland Hospital is asked to call the Virginia State Police’s Bureau of Criminal Investigations at 804-537-6788.