Lucy Letby, a 32-year-old nurse, has been accused of killing seven premature babies and attempting to kill at least ten others while working at Countess of Chester Hospital between 2015 and 2016. The victims were five baby boys and two baby girls. One of the infants had his life threatened three times, twice a day, while under the care of Nurse Letby.
The neonatal nurse, Letby, who was trained to work in the intensive care unit, went on a year-long killing spree, causing the families of over a dozen children in her care to suffer greatly. The hospital’s children’s unit described her as a “persistent evil presence.”
A nurse harmed babies during her night shifts in the NICU, taking advantage of the fact that parents were less likely to visit overnight. She caused harm to and even killed multiple children, including twins.
According to documents presented at the Manchester Crown Court in the United Kingdom, the nurse is accused of killing one premature baby by giving them an injection of insulin. Additionally, Baby E was allegedly injected with air which doctors say can cause strokes or heart attacks. The nurse is also accused of feeding babies milk both through feeding tubes and their veins.
According to the prosecution’s opening statement in the Crown Court, Letby allegedly targeted multiple sets of twins, and in some instances, one twin was fatally harmed while the other survived. Nick Johnson KC presented this information during his opening remarks: “Sometimes a baby that she succeeded in killing was not killed the first or even second time she tried.”
He continued: “Sometimes they were injected with air – both intravenously [into the blood] and via the nasogastric tube [into the stomach]. Sometimes they were injected with milk or some other fluid. Sometimes it was insulin. But the constant presence was Lucy Letby.”
In court, Letby pleaded not guilty to twenty-two charges in connection to seventeen babies, some of whom she allegedly killed and others she allegedly attempted to kill.
According to Johnson, Letby breached protocol at a neonatal unit in a highly restricted British hospital.
“It is a hospital like so many others in the UK, but unlike many other hospitals in the UK, and unlike many other neonatal units in the UK, within the neonatal unit at the Countess of Chester Hospital, a poisoner was at work.”
The prosecutor continued, “Babies who had not been unstable at all suddenly severely deteriorated. Sometimes babies who had been sick and then on the mend deteriorated for no apparent reason. Having searched for a cause, which they were unable to find, the consultants found the inexplicable collapses and deaths did have one common denominator. The presence of one of the neonatal nurses. That nurse was Lucy Letby.”
The trial of Letby is ongoing and anticipated to have a duration of six months.