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Serial baby killer Lucy Letby guilty of ‘cold-blooded’ attempt to murder newborn

lucy letby mugshot
Lucy Letby is currently serving 14 whole life orders behind bars for the murder of seven babies and attempted murder of six others (Picture: PA)

Lucy Letby has been found guilty of the attempted murder of a baby girl as her parents gasped and cried when the verdict was read out.

The 34-year-old convicted child killer has been found guilty of the murder of Baby K, after a jury failed to reach a verdict previously in August.

Letby was previously given 14 whole-life orders in prison at Manchester Crown Court for the murder of seven young babies and trying to murder six others, while she worked at the Countess of Chester Hospital between June 2015 and June 2016.

The jury found Letby guilty today after just three-and-a-half-hours following the four-week retrial of trying to murder the ‘very premature’ baby by dislodging her breathing tube 90 minutes after her birth.

Meanwhile Letby sat in the dock and showed no emotion on her face as the verdict was read out.

The prosecution said Letby interfered with Baby K’s breathing tube on two more occasions during the same shift to create the impression that Baby K was habitually displacing her own tube.

Baby K was targeted by Letby after she was moved from the delivery room to the neo-natal unit after her premature birth.

The court heard how consultant paediatrician Dr Ravi Jayaram caught Letby ‘virtually red-handed’ when he entered the neo-natal unit at 3.45am on February 17 2016.

He said he saw ‘no evidence’ that Letby was doing anything to try and help Baby K as she stood by her incubator.

countess of chester hospital
Lucy Letby worked at the Countess of Chester Hospital between June 2015 and June 2016 (Picture: Getty Images)

When Baby K’s oxygen levels dropped, he told the court he heard no call for help from Letby or alarms sounding.

Baby K was moved to a specialist hospital afterwards because of her premature birth but died three days later.

Cause of death was certified as extreme prematurity and severe respiratory distress syndrome and a post-mortem examination was not carried out.

Letby told the jury that she had no recollection of this event and denied the offences she had been convicted of.

But almost two years later Letby searched Baby K’s surname on Facebook in April 2018.

Prosecutor Nick Johnson KC said this behaviour by Letby became a pattern.

He told the court: ‘The truth is that Lucy Letby had a fascination with the babies she had murdered and attempted to murder, and with their families. She took pleasure in her murderous handiwork.’

Senior Crown Prosecutor Nicola Wyn Williams said: ‘Lucy Letby has continually denied that she tried to kill this baby or any of the babies that she has been convicted of murdering or attempting to murder. The jury has heard all of the detailed evidence including from her in her own defence and formed its own view.

‘Our case included direct evidence from a doctor who walked into the nursery to find a very premature baby desaturating with Letby standing by, taking no action to help or to raise the alarm. She had deliberately dislodged the breathing tube in an attempt to kill her.

‘Staff at the unit had to think the unthinkable – that one of their own was deliberately harming and killing babies in their care.

‘Letby dislodged the tube a further two times over the following few hours in an attempt to cover her tracks and suggest that the first dislodgment was accidental. These were the actions of a cold-blooded, calculated killer.

‘The grief that the family of Baby K have felt is unimaginable. Our thoughts remain with them and all those affected by this case at this time.’

Letby will be sentenced for the attempted murder of Baby K on July 5 at Manchester Crown Court.

Her charge for Baby K’s murder was originally dropped in June 2022 due to lack of evidence from the prosecution.

Her bid to challenge her convictions at the Court of Appeal were denied in May.

In September, a public inquiry is set to be launched as to how Letby was able to commit her crimes.

This is a developing news story, more to follow soon… Check back shortly for further updates.

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