Lucy Letby one of two nurses on duty when babies were poisoned, court told

Lucy Letby was one of only two nurses on duty when two baby boys were poisoned eight months apart with insulin, her murder trial has heard.

Lucy Letby court sketch
Lucy Letby court sketch

The prosecution allege that Letby, 33, added unprescribed insulin to a bag, or bags, containing nutrients which was intravenously given to Child F in August 2015 at the Countess of Chester Hospital.

It is alleged she struck again with another deliberate insulin poisoning on the neonatal unit in April 2016 when Child L was intravenously receiving a sugar solution, dextrose.

In both cases the youngsters had hypoglycaemic episodes in which their blood sugar levels dropped dangerously low before they went on to make full recoveries.

The Crown say Letby also attacked each boy's twin brother with injections of air - Child E who died and Child M who collapsed before he recovered.

Letby denies administering insulin to either child or interfering with any bags.

Giving her 11th day of evidence on Monday at Manchester Crown Court, Letby confirmed she agreed that someone intentionally gave insulin to Child F.

The court has heard Letby co-signed with a colleague, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, the putting up of a bag of nutrients for the youngster.

Letby told jurors she had no memory of the event independent of the nursing notes.

Cross-examining, prosecutor Nick Johnson KC asked: "Do you accept that somebody put insulin in the TPN (total parenteral nutrition) bag or bags?"

Letby said: "I don't think I can say exactly what was in that bag but I accept he was given insulin at some point."

The defendant accepted, from the evidence, that someone put unprescribed insulin into a bag, or bags, of dextrose used for Child L.

She also agreed there was "no legitimate reason" for adding insulin.

Mr Johnson said: "If we look at the staffing arrangements for this shift and (Child F), only two people are common to each shift. One is (nurse) Belinda Williamson and the other is...?

"Myself," said Letby.

Mr Johnson accused Letby of attacking Child L when the youngster's designated nurse had left the room to give medications to other babies in the unit.

Mr Johnson said: "That was the opportunity you took to poison (Child L), wasn't it?"

"No," said Letby.

Mr Johnson suggested it was a "targeted attack".

Letby replied: "Not by me."

Mr Johnson said: "Not by you, somebody else?"

"Yes," said Letby.

Mr Johnson said: "Poisoning of a child in the same way that (Child F) was poisoned?"

Letby said: "Yes."

Mr Johnson said: "With the same substance?"

"Yes," repeated Letby.

Mr Johnson said: "Is the reality that unless there is more than one poisoner it has to be you or Belinda Williamson?"

Letby replied: "I can only answer for myself and say I have never put insulin into any bags."

Mr Johnson said: "It was never suggested (by Letby's counsel) to Belinda Williamson that she did it."

Letby said: "I can't answer that."

Earlier in the trial, Ms Williamson - and other nurses who worked on the two relevant shifts - denied they had given insulin to either of the infants.

Proceedings for the day finished after the lunch break when a juror was taken ill.

Letby, from Hereford, denies the murders of seven babies and the attempted murders of 10 others between June 2015 and June 2016.

The trial continues.

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