It’s official, former neonatal nurse Lucy Letby, 33, will be spending the rest of her natural life behind prison bars. British Justice James Goss sentenced Letby on Monday (Aug. 21) with no chance of release.
The sentencing term reflects Letby’s crimes, which include killing seven babies and harming ten others in the neonatal unit between 2015 and 2016. This is reportedly the most severe punishment Letby could receive, per Associated Press.
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Lucy Letby reportedly did not appear in court for her sentence. But eight of the 11 jurors who convicted Letby after 22 days of deliberation did. On Monday, Justice Goss said the former nurse has no remorse for her actions. She will reportedly receive a transcript of the court proceedings, including the judge’s statement.
“There was a deep malevolence bordering on sadism in your actions. During the course of this trial, you have coldly denied ay responsibility for your wrongdoing. You have no remorse, There are no mitigating factors,” Justice Goss said.
The Evidence British Prosecutors Presented Against Lucy Letby
The prosecutor in the case, Nicholas Johnson, agreed with the judge, calling Lucy’s actions “sadistic conduct.” Yet, British officials could not establish an actual motive despite a 10-month trial via the Manchester Crown Court.
However, when police arrested Lucy Letby at her home in July 2018, they uncovered a written confession amid several notes.
“I don’t deserve to live. I killed them on purpose because I’m not good enough to care for them,” the former nurse wrote in one note. Adding, “I am a horrible evil person. I AM EVIL I DID THIS” in another.
In addition to keeping hospital records on the babies she attacked, Letby also reportedly conducted extensive online searches about the deceased parents after the killings.
The now 33-year-old killed seven babies using several methods, like injecting air into their blood and stomachs. She also overfed them with milk, poisoned them with insulin, and physically assaulted them, per trial records.
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The identities of the seven deceased and the additional harmed infants will be sealed. However, it’s known that Letby committed these atrocious acts while working at the neonatal ward of the Countess of Chester Hospital.
Pascale Jones of Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said Lucy attempted to “deceive her colleagues and pass off the harm she caused as nothing more than a worsening of each baby’s existing vulnerability.”
“In her hands, innocuous substances like air, milk, and fluids or medication like insulin would become lethal,” a CPS statement said, per CNN. “She perverted her learning and weaponized her craft to inflict harm, grief, and death.”
In one case, Lucy Letby attacked a set of twins conceived through in-vitro fertilization. The former nurse killed one of the male infants, Child E, but doctors did not conduct a post-mortem because the mother believed the child passed from natural causes.
However, the mother later admitted to hearing a “horrendous” sound that resembled “more of a scream than a cry.” Letby also attempted to kill the infant’s twin brother, Child F, via insulin poisoning, which left the infant alive but struggling with learning deficiencies, says their mother. Letby later bathed and chose the woolen gown Child E was buried in.
Of the 13 children Lucy Letby harmed, there were three sets of twins and one set of triplets.
How Lucy Letby Got Away With Harming Babies For A Whole Year
Reports say hospital officials recorded an uptick in babies dying or suffering health declines in 2015. An investigation found that Lucy Letby was on duty for every instance–described as “a malevolent presence.”
As early as October 2015, complaints from senior doctors essentially went unheard, per trial proceedings. Letby was allowed on nurse duty until late June 2016. She was assigned clerical responsibilities following the death of two male triplets and another male infant over three consecutive days.
When the hospital relocated her from the neonatal ward in September 2016, she filed a grievance, and the complaining doctors were instructed to apologize in writing.
A police investigation intervened in her scheduled March 2017 return to the neonatal ward. As mentioned, police arrested Lucy at her home in July 2018 and also in 2019. Despite being released both times, officials remanded her after the final November 2020 arrest. Her trial began in October 2022 and ended with her conviction on Aug. 18.
She had pleaded not guilty to the initial 22 charges and was ultimately convicted of 14.
The UK government reportedly plans to investigate how concerns about Letby were handled by regulators and Britain’s National Health Service.
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