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Lucy Letby: Child serial killer nurse faces retrial over one attempted murder allegation

Letby sentenced to whole-life order for murder of seven babies and attempted murder of six others at Countess of Chester Hospital

Tara Cobham
Monday 25 September 2023 14:41 BST
Lucy Letby: Timeline of nurse who murdered seven babies

Nurse Lucy Letby is facing a retrial over an outstanding allegation she attempted to murder a baby girl after she was found guilty of murdering seven other infants.

The Crown Prosecution Service on Monday announced its decision on whether it would be seeking a retrial against the 33-year-old over six counts of attempted murder in relation to five babies.

Appearing at Manchester Crown Court via video link from HMP New Hall in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, Letby heard she will be facing a retrial over one count of attempted murder related to a baby girl, known as Child K, in February 2016 but not the other five outstanding allegations.

Lucy Letby last month became one of Britain’s most prolific serial killers of children (PA Media)

A provisional date for the retrial, which is expected to last between two and three weeks at the same court, has been set for 10 June next year.

Letby, from Hereford, sat behind a desk and spoke only to confirm her name and that she could see and hear the proceedings.

Letby was sentenced last month to a rare whole-life order for the murders of seven babies and the attempted murders of six others at the Countess of Chester Hospital’s neonatal unit, making her one of Britain’s most prolific serial killers of children.

However, the jury of seven women and four men in the 10-month trial could not reach verdicts on allegations that Letby attempted to murder three baby girls, known in court documents as Child H, Child J and Child K.

The jury, which heard from more than 240 witnesses, also decided it could not reach verdicts over an allegation she tried to murder another male infant, Child Q, and two counts of attempted murder against Child N, a baby boy, against whom Letby was found guilty of one count of attempted murder.

She was cleared of two other counts of attempted murder.

Letby denied all the offences and formally lodged an appeal against her conviction at the Court of Appeal earlier in September.

Following the verdicts, families of her victims expressed their “extreme hurt, anger and distress”. Janet Moore, a family liaison coordinator at Cheshire Constabulary, read out a joint statement on behalf of the families, which said: “We are Following the verdicts, families of her victims expressed their “extreme hurt, anger and distress”. Janet Moore, a family liaison coordinator at Cheshire Constabulary, read out a joint statement on behalf of the families, which said: “We are heartbroken, devastated, angry and feel numb. We may never truly know why this happened.”

It has also been announced that an independent inquiry will be held into the case, which will examine “the circumstances surrounding the deaths and incidents, including how concerns raised by clinicians were dealt with”, the Department of Health and Social Care has said.

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