UPDATE: Four Oaks responds to Cedar Rapids attempted murder - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATE: Four Oaks responds to Cedar Rapids attempted murder

Posted: Updated:
INDEPENDENCE (KWWL) -

A 14-year-old Cedar Rapids girl is facing an attempted murder charge following an incident at Four Oaks on the MHI Campus in Independence last month.

The Buchanan County Sheriff's Office says the teen was arrested on May 29 and charged with attempt to commit murder, going armed with intent, intimidation with a dangerous weapon, willful injury and assault with intent to inflict injury. She was also charged with assault in connection with a separate incident on May 23.

Her case has been referred to Juvenile Court Services.

Four Oaks spokeswoman Liz Mathis released the following statement Thursday:

"We stand by our staff and do our best to protect them in situations that escalate, as this one did. Our staff know that the children we work with, specifically those with high-risk mental health issues, continue to be a challenge. We have been working with two national trauma-informed care experts for the past couple of years, and they regularly train and review critical incidents with us regarding children in care.

The staff who were injured are recovering. One required a check at the emergency room and the other did not require medical treatment.

While the Buchanan County Attorney is carefully considering how to charge this young woman, we need to keep in mind that this is a complex issue and criminalizing a child with mental health problems will not result in individual improvement, productivity and a successful return to the community.

Since January of 2011, Four Oaks has admitted many “exception to policy,” high-risk mental health children that would previously been sent out of state for treatment because of their complicated cases. Four Oaks’ commitment to consistent staff training, better client-staff ratios and funding to do this difficult work has produced excellent outcomes for many children who had no other options left."


Powered by Frankly