The Killer Nanny: Who is Louise Woodward and where is she now?
Channel 4 is set to re-examine the infamous case of Louise Woodward, a nanny who was charged with murdering eight-month-old Matthew Eappen.
The new three-part documentary series, titled The Killer Nanny: Did She Do It?, launches tonight and will take a look back at the murder charge, trial, and appeal in a new context.
Woodward’s all-or-nothing trial gripped the globe in 1997 when the 19-year-old British childminder faced a no charge lesser than second-degree murder.
The jury ultimately delivered a guilty verdict after being presented with evidence of symptoms synonymous with Shaken Baby Syndrome, sparking protest rallies in both the UK and US on separate sides of the argument.
Louise Woodward was just 19 when she was found guilty of the murder of eight-month-old Matthew Eappen while working as a nanny for his parents in Massachusetts, United States.
The baby died of brain injuries 10 weeks after she started her job as an au pair with the family, with prosecutors alleging Matthew had shown symptoms of Shaken Baby Syndrome.
However, the defence team argued his death had been caused by an injury he sustained weeks before.
Woodward, who has always maintained her innocence, was convicted of second-degree murder however this was reduced to involuntary manslaughter just 10 days later.
Initially, Woodward was jailed for 15 years, but she was freed after 278 days behind bars.
On returning to the UK, Woodward gave an interview to Martin Bashir for a special edition of the flagship BBC programme Panorama, in which she maintained her innocence.
Matthew’s parents filed a civil lawsuit to prevent Woodward from earning any profits from selling her story.
Woodward lost the lawsuit by default as her legal costs were no longer covered by the au pair agency.
As of 2021, Woodward is known under her married name, Elkes. She is 43 and is a law graduate and a salsa instructor.
She and her husband Anthony Elkes welcomed a daughter in 2014.
Before becoming a parent, Woodward told The Daily Mail: ‘I know there are some people waiting for me to have a baby so they can say nasty things.
‘It upsets me but that is not going to stop me leading my life. I am innocent. I have done nothing wrong.
‘I am entitled to enjoy my life. I am not going to apologise for being happy.’
The Killer Nanny: Did She Do It? airs tonight at 9pm on Channel 4.
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