The court has instructed the jury at the trial of Lucy Letby to reach a majority verdict on charges that the nurse murdered and attempted to murder babies while working at the Countess of Chester hospital in north-west England. After four weeks of deliberation, comprising 76 hours of debate, the seven women and four men of the panel were given the go-ahead to come to a verdict supported by at least 10 members.
Letby, 33, denies all accusations of murdering seven babies and attempting to murder 10 others. The case at Manchester crown court began on 10 July and took a dramatic twist when one juror was removed for “good personal reasons” last week.
With tensions rising and attention around the case escalating, it remains unclear how long it will take the jury to deliver a decision. Yet, as the days pass, it is looking increasingly likely that one of these jurors will soon be responsible for deciding Letby’s fate.
A trial opened this week in the United Kingdom with nursing staff member Lucy Letby facing an array of charges, including murdering newborns through alleged air injections and attempting to kill others by poisoning them with insulin or tampering with feeding tubes.
Prosecutors describe the crimes as “calculated” and “cold-blooded”, occurring over a one-year period beginning in June 2015. Consultant paediatricians became suspicious after Letby appeared to be at the center of a number of sudden and “unexplained” infant deaths in her care.
In one heartbreaking case, one of the twins Letby was charged with killing was only twenty-four hours old when it was alleged she injected him with air. The baby died within ninety minutes of his caretaker beginning her shift. The next day, prosecutors allege she tried to commit the same crime on the baby’s twin sister.
However, Letby denies all charges against her and claims a number of the babies were victims of inadequate medical care rather than deliberate acts of malice. She insists they should have been receiving specialist treatment elsewhere.
Lucy Letby, a graduate from Hereford, took to the stand today in her trial for attempted murder of 8 babies. In a fervent defence of her innocence, Letby declared that she “only ever did her best to care” for the infants and never intended to harm them.
When asked by the jury how the allegations had impacted her life, Letby stated that her “whole world was stopped” when the charges were brought against her. The case continues to raise eyebrows across the nation as it progresses.