An Akron woman has been charged with criminal trespassing after Summa Akron City Hospital security became concerned she could attempt to abduct a newborn.
The 32-year-old woman was arrested by Summa Protective Services, the hospital’s private police department, last month. She had entered the City Hospital campus for a third time within a week after being warned to stay away, according to Akron Municipal Court records.
Assistant City Prosecutor Greta Johnson said the Summa officers had concerns about her behavior “as it pertains to pregnant women and the potential threat of a baby leaving the hospital with her that is not her own.”
“They had concern about whether the potential of an abduction could happen with her, based on their experience with her and encounters with her over the last several months,” Johnson said. “ … She’s been previously warned to not return to the facility unless she had an actual appointment or an emergency, and that wasn’t the case in the situation. She didn’t have any other business being there.”
No actual threats or attempts of an abduction were made, Johnson said.
“She made no outward attempts that she was going to take a baby, and she’s made no outward attempts that we’re aware of on a child,” Johnson said.
She said that Akron Municipal Judge Julie A. Schafer requested a competency evaluation of the woman during a recent pretrial hearing before the case proceeds.
The woman couldn’t be reached for comment Thursday. The Beacon Journal is not naming her because she has been charged only with a misdemeanor at this time.
Summa spokesman Jim Gosky confirmed that the health system filed a criminal trespass complaint against the woman but declined to comment further “on ongoing matters or police investigations.”
“I can assure you, though, that the health, safety and security of our employees, our patients and their families are of paramount importance at Summa Health System and we will do everything necessary to ensure their ongoing safety,” Gosky said.
A warning spread over social media Thursday urging new mothers and expectant women to watch out for a woman “asking about pregnant women and their due dates, lurking around the nursery” at local hospitals.
By late afternoon, the post had been shared more than 17,000 times on Facebook.
An Aultman Hospital spokeswoman said the Canton facility was notified by an Akron hospital to be on the alert for a woman who was hanging out in Akron-area maternity wards. As of Thursday, there were no reports of the woman showing up at Aultman.
Staff writer Phil Trexler contributed to this story. Cheryl Powell can be reached at 330-996-3902 or email@example.com. Follow Powell on Twitter at twitter.com/CherylPowellABJ.