Lucy Letby: Killer nurse sentenced to another whole life order for attempted murder of baby

Killer nurse Lucy Letby said "I'm innocent" after she was handed another whole life order for the attempted murder of an extremely premature baby.

The 34-year-old was found guilty by a jury earlier this week following a retrial at Manchester Crown Court.

She was already serving 14 whole life orders after being convicted last year of the murder of seven babies and the attempted murder of six others at the Countess of Chester Hospital between June 2015 and June 2016.

However, the jury in her original trial had been unable to reach a verdict on the charge that she also attempted to murder a premature baby, known as Baby K, in February 2016.

Letby, from Hereford, angered the families of her victims when she refused to be present in court to be sentenced to the whole life orders last year.

However, she was in court on Friday wearing a black suit and blue blouse.

Sentencing Letby, Mr Justice Goss told her the attempted murder was "another shocking act of calculated, callous cruelty".

He added: "During the course of this trial you have coldly denied any responsibility for any offences and sought to attribute wrongdoing to others.

"You have no remorse."

After he reiterated to Letby that she would spend the rest of her life in prison, she turned round as she was led from the dock and said: "I'm innocent."

Read more:
Who is Lucy Letby?

How the police caught Letby
Will she ever be freed from prison?

'Cold-blooded killer'

During the retrial, the prosecution said Letby had displaced Baby K's breathing tube and had been caught "virtually red-handed" when Dr Ravi Jayaram walked into the room.

After the baby recovered, the tube was displaced two more times that night, the prosecution said, alleging Letby had tried to make it appear like the infant habitually displaced it herself.

The baby, who had been born at 25 weeks gestation, was transferred to a specialist neo-natal unit but died three days later.

Letby's actions were not alleged to have caused her death.

From the witness box, Letby told the jury of six women and six men that she had no recollection of the event described by Dr Jayaram and did not accept it had taken place.

However, Senior Crown Prosecutor Nicola Wyn Williams, of CPS Mersey-Cheshire's Complex Casework Unit, said after the verdict that Letby carried out the actions of a "cold-blooded, calculated killer" when she tried to murder Baby K.

Letby's motives remain unclear

In a statement after Letby was handed another whole life sentence today, Ms Williams said: "This has been an incredibly difficult, complex and disturbing case. A trained nurse tasked with looking after the most vulnerable babies used her craft and her skills to become a killer.

"She stood by as the parents of the babies she had killed or tried to kill, grieved and pretended to try and comfort them, all along knowing she was the person responsible.

"The savagery of her actions has been difficult for the prosecution team to comprehend and has devastated the lives of the families of these babies.

"We still have no idea why she committed these crimes."

Letby was asked about Facebook searches she made for Baby K's surname more than two years after she left the neonatal unit.

She had also searched for the parents of other babies she was convicted of murdering or attempting to murder.

Letby denied having a fascination with the families or looking for signs of their grief.

She told the jury: "I'm not guilty of what I've been found guilty of."

The parents of Baby K gasped and then cried when the verdict was read out on Tuesday after the jury deliberated for just three-and-a-half hours.

Letby showed no emotion in the dock.

A public inquiry into events at the Countess of Chester Hospital's neonatal unit will begin to hear evidence in September.