A Nurse has been arrested on suspicion of murdering eight babies and attempted murder of nine babies at the Countess of Chester Hospital neo-natal unit in Chester, England.
The woman, identified as nurse Lucy Letby was arrested on Tuesday November 10, after her previous arrests in 2018 and 2019 over the tragedies at the Countess of Chester Hospital.
She had worked at the unit as a student nurse during three years of training before qualifying as a children’s nurse at the University of Chester in 2011.
Detective Chief Inspector Paul Hughes, of Cheshire Police, said: ‘In July 2018, a healthcare professional was arrested on suspicion of murder in relation to the deaths of eight babies and the attempted murder of six babies at the neonatal unit at the Countess of Chester Hospital. She was subsequently bailed pending further inquiries.
‘In June 2019, the healthcare professional was re-arrested on suspicion of murder in relation to the deaths of eight babies and the attempted murder of six babies. She was also arrested in connection with the attempted murder of three additional babies.
‘Today, as part of our ongoing inquiries, the healthcare professional has been re-arrested on suspicion of murder in relation to the deaths of eight babies and the attempted murder of nine babies.
‘The woman is currently in custody helping officers with their inquiries.’
According to reports, Detectives launched an investigation into infant deaths at the hospital in May 2017, over the deaths of 15 babies between June 2015 and June 2016 at that time.
The probe later widened to the deaths of 17 babies and 16 non-fatal collapses between March 2015 and July 2016.
In a 2013 interview with the Chester and District Standard newspaper, the nurse, originally from Hereford, said she cared for babies requiring various levels of support.
DCI Hughes added: ‘Parents of all the babies have been kept fully updated on this latest development and they are continuing to be supported throughout the process by specially trained officers.
‘This is an extremely difficult time for all the families and it is important to remember that, at the heart of this, there are a number of bereaved families seeking answers as to what happened to their children.
‘Due to the nature of this investigation it is extremely challenging but it is important to remember that, despite the passage of time, it is very much active and ongoing. There are no set timescales and we remain committed to carrying out a thorough investigation.
‘We fully appreciate that it continues to have a big impact on all those involved – including the families of the babies, staff and patients at the hospital as well as members of the public.’