“Sweet Lucy”: a neonatal nurse, Britain’s most prolific murderess

It was the summer of 2015 when the Countess Hospital in Chester (North West England) realized something unusual was happening. The death rate in the neonatal unit up to that point was two to three a year. But in June 2015 they registered three in just two weeks.

Stephen Brearey, Senior Advisor to the Neonatal Ward, called a meeting with Ward Manager Eirian Powell and the hospital’s Director of Nursing, Alison Kelly. The internal investigation revealed that the nurse Lucy Letby he had been on duty at all three deaths. “Oh no, that can’t be Lucy. Sweet Lucy”Brearey remarked. The three cases appeared to have “nothing in common.” At that time nobody suspected a crime.

but this friday Lucy Letby33, was found guilty murderof seven babies And the attempted murder of six other peopleThis makes her the most prolific child killer in recent British history.

The trial in a case that has shocked the country took place at Manchester Crown Court, where evidence presented by prosecutors suggested the nurse killed the children, five boys and two girls. they are injected with air through an IV with a syringe.

The woman, who has been suspected of the crimes since she was first arrested in 2018, was arrested again in 2020 and charged by police after receiving the prosecutor’s clearance, which was presented 22 charges against her.

The above court also found her guilty of attempted murder of six other babies, including air injection insulin poisoning or the administration of excessive amounts of food. The verdict will be announced on August 21.

Instead, the jury, which had deliberated for more than 110 hours, found Letby, who was absent in court this Friday, not guilty of two counts of attempted murder while failing to reach a verdict on six other counts of murder.

The charges on which she was convicted relate to the period between June 2015 and June 2016, when there were multiple unexplained newborn deaths at the Countess of Chester Hospital.

Letby worked as an intern at the public center for three years before graduating from the local university and specializing in pediatric nursing training. Since then, the convicted woman has been working in the neonatal unit, specializing in babies who require different types of care. According to the BBC, despite initial suspicions, those responsible at the hospital took no action in 2015 and Only later were the police called.

Letby shows no signs of a traumatic or abusive childhood. He grew up in downtown Hereford, a picture of the English middle class. She was the only child of John Letby, 76and his wife Susan, 62, described as loved and respected by neighbors. The couple attended their daughter’s trial every day and remained fiercely loyal to her.

Many suspect that Letby He suffers from a kind of psychopathy. Those who watched her in court saw her coolly distancing herself from the charges she faced, often watching impassively from the glass-enclosed dock while the jury listened to the most harrowing testimonies, including from parents who witnessed were the “terrible” cries of their babies and others who saw their tiny limbs contorted by the seizure.

Some parents remembered seeing something the oddly calm nurse bathing and dressing her dead babyonly to learn years later that her son had not died of natural causes and that the woman who performed this autopsy ritual was in fact the killer.

The surviving children weren’t always lucky: Two of Letby’s victims, a girl, now eight, and a boy, now seven, suffered brain damage from his attacks. The girl, who was born 15 weeks premature and had a 5% chance of survival, was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and requires round-the-clock care.

It wasn’t until the 16th week of the trial that Letby showed emotion, but that had nothing to do with his victims. A married doctor who was said to be in love – she denied they had an affair – arrived at the Seventh Chamber of Manchester Crown Court to testify last February. As he confirmed his name behind the screen that shields witnesses from the defendant’s view, Letby burst into tears and left his seat to try and open the door to the court cells. Four months after one of the most harrowing criminal trials in recent memory, the killer shed a tear for the first time.

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