WORLD NEWS

British nurse Lucy Letby imprisoned for life for the murders of 7 babies and attempted murders of 6

Aug 21, 2023, 7:30 AM

This undated handout issued by Cheshire Constabulary shows of nurse Lucy Letby. A neonatal nurse in...

This undated handout issued by Cheshire Constabulary shows of nurse Lucy Letby. A neonatal nurse in a British hospital has been found guilty of killing seven babies and trying to kill six others. Lucy Letby was charged with murder in the deaths of five baby boys and two girls, and the attempted murder of five boys and five girls, when she worked at the Countess of Chester Hospital in northwest England between 2015 and 2016. (Cheshire Constabulary via AP)
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

(Cheshire Constabulary via AP)

LONDON (AP) — A former neonatal nurse who killed seven babies in her care and tried to kill six others at a hospital in northern England was sentenced Monday to life in prison with no chance of release by a judge who highlighted “the cruelty and calculation” of her actions.

Lucy Letby, who refused to appear in court to face grieving parents who spoke of their anger and anguish, was given the most severe sentence possible under British law, which does not allow the death penalty.

Justice James Goss said that the number of killings and attempts and the nature of the murders by a neonatal nurse entrusted with care for the most fragile babies provided the “exceptional circumstances” required to impose a so-called “whole-life order,” which is exceptionally rare.

“There was a malevolence bordering on sadism in your action,” Goss said. “During the course of this trial you have coldly denied any responsibility for your wrongdoing. You have no remorse. There are no mitigating factors.”

Following 22 days of deliberation, a jury at Manchester Crown Court convicted Letby, 33, of killing the babies over a yearlong period that saw her prey on the vulnerabilities of sick newborns and their anxious parents.

The victims died in the neonatal unit at the Countess of Chester Hospital in northwest England between June 2015 and June 2016.

“I don’t think we will ever get over the fact that our daughter was tortured till she had no fight left in her and everything she went through over her short life was deliberately done by someone who was supposed to protect her and help her come home where she belonged,” the mother of a girl identified as Child I said in a statement read in court.

Prosecutor Nicholas Johnson said Letby deserved a “whole-life tariff” for “sadistic conduct” and premeditated crimes.

Defense lawyer Ben Myers said Letby maintained her innocence and that there was nothing he could add that would be able to reduce her sentence.

Letby’s absence, which is allowed in British courts during sentencing, fueled anger from the families of the victims, who wanted her to listen to statements about the devastation caused by her crimes.

“You thought it was your right to play God with our children’s lives,” the mother of twins, one of whom was murdered and the other whom Letby tried to kill, said in a statement to the court.

Politicians and victim advocates have called for changes in the law to force criminals to appear for sentencing after several high-profile convicts chose not to face their victims in recent months.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who called the crimes “shocking and harrowing,” said his government would bring forward in “due course” its plan to require convicts to attend their sentencings.

“It’s cowardly that people who commit such horrendous crimes do not face their victims and hear first-hand the impact that their crimes have had on them and their families and loved ones,” Sunak said.

During Letby’s 10-month trial, prosecutors said that in 2015 the hospital started to see a significant rise in the number of babies who were dying or suffering sudden declines in their health for no apparent reason.

Some suffered “serious catastrophic collapses” but survived after help from medical staff.

Letby was on duty in all of the cases, with prosecutors describing her as a “constant malevolent presence” in the neonatal unit when the children collapsed or died. The nurse harmed babies in ways that were difficult to detect, and she persuaded colleagues that their collapses and deaths were normal, they said.

Senior doctors said over the weekend that they had raised concerns about Letby as early as October 2015 and that children might have been saved if managers had taken their concerns seriously.

Dr. Stephen Brearey, head consultant at the Countess of Chester Hospital’s neonatal unit, told the Guardian newspaper that deaths could arguably have been avoided as early as February 2016 if executives had “responded appropriately” to an urgent meeting request from concerned doctors.

Letby was finally removed from frontline duties in late June of 2016. She was arrested at her home in July 2018.

An independent inquiry will be conducted into what happened at the hospital and how staff and management responded to the spike in deaths.

KSL 5 TV Live

World News

Couple stands among children **This image is for use with this specific article only**...

CNN

American missionary couple killed by gang in Haiti, family says

A married couple from the US who were serving as missionaries in Haiti were killed there on Thursday, family members said.

2 hours ago

Public hearings in the case South Africa v. Israel. (Courtesy of the International Court of Justice...

Mike Corder

Top UN court orders Israel to halt military operation in Rafah; Israel is unlikely to comply

The top United Nations court has ordered Israel to immediately halt its military operations in the southern Gaza city of Rafah — but stopped short of ordering a full cease-fire.

6 hours ago

stacked boxes in a warehouse...

Shelby Lofton

Brazilian women living in Utah need help transporting donations to Florida

Two Utah women who have gathered three warehouses full of donations for Brazil flooding victims are in need of help.

20 hours ago

This undated photo taken by Colombia's Anthropology and History Institute shows sunken remains from...

Heather Chen and Michael Rios, CNN

Colombia launches expedition to explore 300-year-old Spanish shipwreck filled with sunken treasure

Colombia has launched an underwater expedition to explore a Spanish warship that sank in the Caribbean 300 years ago.

1 day ago

Security forces stand around a stage that collapsed due to a gust of wind during an event attended ...

Michael Rios, Mia Alberti and Fidel Gutierrez and Ivana Kottasová

9 dead, 54 injured as wind causes stage collapse at Mexico election rally

Nine people were killed and a presidential candidate was briefly taken to hospital after a stage collapsed under heavy winds at a campaign rally in Mexico on Wednesday.

1 day ago

Estonia's capital of Tallinn is seen from a British Chinook helicopter on Wednesday, May 15, 2024. ...

Emma Burrows, Associated Press

Russia is waging a shadow war on the West that needs a collective response, Estonian leader says

Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas says Russia is conducting a "shadow war" against the West. As the war in Ukraine takes a turn in Russia's favor, borders are being bolstered in the front-line Baltic nations of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, as well as in Finland and Poland.

3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 Internet Safety Tips for Kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why Printer Security Should Be Top of Mind for Your Business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

British nurse Lucy Letby imprisoned for life for the murders of 7 babies and attempted murders of 6