Couple who believe Lucy Letby tried to kill their baby recognised her face on TV

  • Mike and Victoria Whitfield spoke to ITV's Good Morning Britain

A couple who believe Lucy Letby tried to kill their newborn baby say they saw her standing over their daughters cot seconds before "all hell broke loose".

Mike and Victoria Whitfield's daughter Felicity was born at the Countess of Chester hospital in November 2013.

Just three days after her premature birth, Felicity suffered a catastrophic lung collapse.

She survived, but her parents believe Letby was the nurse looking after her, and say the circumstances mirror some of the babies mentioned in her murder trial.

The neonatal nurse at the Countess of Chester hospital was given a whole-life sentence in prison after being found guilty of murdering seven babies and attempting to murder six more.

Felicity was born prematurely at the Countess of Chester hospital in 2013. Credit: Good Morning Britain

The couple say as soon as they saw Letby's picture in the media they recognised her as the nurse standing over Felicity's cot on the night of her collapse.

Mike Whitfield said: "The first moment that it struck home was when Lucy Letby was first arrested in 2018. It brought it all home."

He added as details followed in the media about the way that Letby had murdered babies in her care they began to question what happened in their own experience.

Victoria Whitfield said: "When we saw her picture come on the screen, I just felt sick to the stomach.

"I called Mike and said that is the woman that was over her cot that night. I’ve got this constant and permanent image in my head of her standing over the cot.

"There was no smile, it was a really blank look on her face. As soon as I saw the image on the TV, it’s the exact same stare.

"As I was walking towards the cot, Lucy Letby was standing over the cot, she just looked up at me and then walked away.

“I sat down and within seconds all the beepers started going off and all hell broke loose."

Speaking of the night when Felicity unexpectedly suffered the collapsed lung, Mrs Whitfield said she had a "mothers instinct" which sent her downstairs at 3am to see her daughter on the neonatal unit.

"She was doing fine the days before," she said. "She was breathing for herself when she was first born, she had a little bit of CPAP to help her but she was breathing fine for herself.

"She was doing great, so much so that the night before who Mike believes was Lucy Letby told him to go home and get some rest because he looked tired.

"At 3 o'clock in the morning I had the urge to go down, so I went downstairs and sat by the cot but as I was walking towards the cot, Lucy was standing over the cot, she just looked up at me and then walked away, and then I walked towards the cot.

"I sat down and within seconds all the beepers started going off."

The parents said they had suspicions as to what had occurred, and "something didn't feel right".

Felicity was transferred to Arrowe Park Hospital in Birkenhead where she recovered.

Mike said: "We were prepared for the worst case scenario. At Arrowe Park, they told us she would be fine.”

The couple say they raised their concerns with the Countess in 2014 and but they were told "it’s just one of those things that sometimes happens in premature babies".

Cheshire Police are set to investigate over 4,000 babies that were in Lucy Letby's care in her nursing career. Credit: PA Images

Cheshire Police have said it is continuing to review the care of some 4,000 babies who were admitted to the Countess of Chester, and also at Liverpool Women’s Hospital when Letby had two work placements, during her employment from 2012.

In an earlier statement, Jane Tomkinson, Acting Chief Executive Officer at the Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Following the trial of former neonatal nurse Lucy Letby, the Trust welcomes the announcement of an independent inquiry by the Department of Health and Social Care.

"In addition, the trust will be supporting the ongoing investigation by Cheshire Police.

"Due to ongoing legal considerations, it would not be appropriate for the Trust to make any further comment at this time."

As Lucy Letby becomes the most prolific serial child killer in modern Britain, Granada Reports examines how she managed to slip under the radar for so long.