Lucy Letby may have murdered three more babies, says expert witness

18 September 2023, 07:21 | Updated: 18 September 2023, 07:47

Lucy Letby may have killed three more babies and tried to murder another 15, a paediatrician at her trial claimed.
Lucy Letby may have killed three more babies and tried to murder another 15, a paediatrician at her trial claimed. Picture: Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

Lucy Letby may have murdered three more babies and tried to kill another 15, an expert witness has said.

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Dewi Evans, who gave expert evidence against Letby, has shared fresh concerns over more baby deaths that were not part of her case.

He has suspicions over the cases of five children who survived and also identified a further 10 children who could have been harmed.

They were all likely to have had their breathing tubes tampered with, he said, adding that Letby's "modus operandi changed over time".

It comes after it was confirmed last week that Letby is appealing her conviction.

The 33-year-old was found guilty of murdering seven babies at the Countess of Chester hospital's neonatal unit in 2015 and 2016 and attempting to murder six others.

Read more: Killer nurse Lucy Letby to appeal conviction after being jailed for life for murder of seven babies

Read more: Lucy Letby inquiry given powers to compel NHS bosses to face questioning over baby murders

Lucy Letby
Lucy Letby. Picture: Alamy

Dr Evans said several cases needed to be looked at "more thoroughly".

"Initially, I looked at 32 cases and there are seven of those [which were not part of the trial] that need more scrutiny," he told the Mail's Trial of Lucy Letby podcast.

"These babies had illnesses that were life-threatening and three of them died – but we need to look at them to see if they were placed in harm's way as well.

"They were poorly so it may be impossible to show beyond reasonable doubt whether they were the victim of inflicted harm.

"But there are seven cases that concern me which we need to look at more thoroughly. I will be liaising with Cheshire Police to bring those cases to their attention."

Cheshire Police reveal details of Lucy Letby's diary entries

Dr Evans said that, following Letby's arrest, he was asked to review the notes of another 48 babies not included in the trial.

"They go back to 2012, although most date back to June 2014 – 12 months prior to the first fatality," he said.

"I found several cases that are highly suspicious where an endotracheal tube – placed in a baby's throat when they need breathing support – had been displaced, had come out.

"These tubes can come out accidentally, but for so many to come out is very, very unusual, especially in what I consider to be a good unit.

"I suspect these tubes were displaced intentionally. Of the 18, there could be up to ten babies who were placed in harm's way. As far as I know they survived without suffering any long-term harm."

All of the babies reviewed by Dr Evans were born at the Countess of Chester hospital.

Cheshire Police say they are continuing to review the care of some 4,000 babies who were admitted to the hospital.

They are also looking at potential cases at Liverpool Women's Hospital where Letby had two work placements.

Only those cases highlighted as concerning medically would be investigated further, police added.