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Entries in Lacrosse (12)

Monday
Apr162012

UVA Lacrosse Murder: Sentencing Date Set for George Huguely

Albemarle/Charlottesville Regional Jail(RICHMOND, Va.) -- The fate of convicted murderer and former University of Virginia lacrosse player George Huguely V will be decided in a formal sentencing on Aug. 30, a Virginia judge ruled Monday.

In February, a jury recommended that a judge sentence Huguely to 26 years in prison for the beating death of ex-girlfriend and classmate Yeardley Love. The judge can either confirm or lessen the sentence, but he cannot increase it.

The jury recommended 25 years in prison for the second-degree murder conviction and one year for a grand larceny conviction for stealing Love’s laptop computer.

Huguely, 25, was not present at Monday’s hearing and the judge denied several efforts by the defense team to discuss motions for a retrial. The judge said that should be discussed at a different date.

There will be a hearing on Thursday to discuss a motion to release evidence from the trial to the media for “educational purposes.” The evidence – including a video of Huguely’s police interrogation and letters Huguely wrote to Love – were kept from the media and the public throughout the trial.

Huguely was accused of killing Love in a drunken rage in 2010 just weeks before she was to graduate from the University of Virginia. Both Huguely and Love were star lacrosse players on the university’s elite teams.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Feb212012

George Huguely Trial Jury Deliberations: Will He Go Free?

Hemera/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- On Wednesday, jurors in former University of Virginia lacrosse player George Huguely V's murder trial will begin deliberations to decide the 24-year-old's fate -- and two legal experts have told ABC News that it is possible that Huguely could be free by the end of the week.

Huguely faces six charges, including first-degree murder, in the death of former girlfriend Yeardley Love. He pleaded not guilty to all of the charges.

Though charged with first-degree murder, a Charlottesville, Va., judge gave jurors a menu of lesser charges to choose from: second-degree murder, voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter. He could also be found not guilty.

Neither the prosecution nor the defense denies that Huguely was in Yeardley's room the night of her death and was involved in some altercation with her. They differ on the severity of the encounter and whether Huguely was directly and intentionally responsible for Love's death.

Depending on the jury's verdict, Huguely could be sentenced to anywhere from one day to life in prison.

Huguely has been in jail for about 21 months and could get credit for time served, so a sentencing of anywhere up to roughly 21 months could allow him to go free.

The jury is made up of 14 people: 12 main jurors and two alternates. There are seven women and seven men, ranging from their late 20s to early 50s.

Court will reconvene at 9 a.m. on Wednesday for the jury to being their deliberations. The two alternates will be released Wednesday morning.

Jurors could reach a verdict as early as Wednesday. If the verdict is guilty, the jurors will reconvene as early as Thursday for a sentencing hearing.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb152012

George Huguely Trial: Yeardley Love's Brain Hemorrhaged from Force

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- A brain expert who dissected Yeardley Love's brain testified at George Huguely's murder trial on Tuesday that Love experienced an injury of such great force that it "twisted" the blood vessels in her brain, causing the brain to hemorrhage.

Dr. Christine Fuller, a neuropathologist, said there was no indication of a natural cause of death and that the level of brain injury, bleeding and damage on Love's brain was caused by a powerful blow to the head.

Fuller testified that even without knowing Love's story, she would have recognized the damage.

"Just looking at the brain without any history I would've called it trauma," she said.

Fuller found contusions, or bruises, on the brain, "which means there has been blunt force trauma to the head," she said.

A great amount of force is needed to twist the brain's blood vessels, more than could be sustained from falling on the ground.  The injury was consistent with a head banging against a wall, Fuller said.

The damage to the brain would have shut down Love's heart and lungs, Fuller said, according to ABC News' affiliate WJLA.  Fuller also testified that there was no possibility that Love's brain injuries could have happened during attempts to resuscitate her.

Tuesday afternoon, medical examiner Bill Gormley returned to the witness stand and testified that Love's blood alcohol level was 0.14.  This is almost more than twice the legal driving limit, but significantly less than the 0.40 minimum usually associated with alcohol-related death, excluding driving accidents caused by alcohol.

A forensic toxicologist also testified that the amount of Adderall found in Love's body was normal for someone who was prescribed the drug, as she was.  Love had a 0.05 concentration of Adderall in her system, and it usually take a concentration between 0.20 and 0.50 to be fatal.

These two testimonies undermine the defense's claim that Love's death was could have been caused by a fatal combination of alcohol and Adderall.

The prosecution has said they will rest their case on Wednesday.  The trial is expected to last at least through this week.

Huguely, 24, is charged with first degree murder as well as five other charges in the death of Love.

Love, 22, was a star lacrosse player at the University of Virginia and a senior just weeks away from graduation.  Huguely was also a lacrosse player for the school's nationally ranked team.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Feb142012

George Huguely Trial: Victim's Injuries Could Be Signs of Smothering

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- Severe bruising and injuries found under Yeardley Love's chin, inside her lip and abrasions on her cheek could be consistent with smothering, according to a medical examiner that testified today in George Huguely V's murder trial.

Huguely told police in a videotaped interview hours after Love's lifeless body was discovered that he had "shook her a little," but insisted that he did not seriously injure her. Still, the injuries described by the medical examiner pointed to signs of a serious struggle between Love and her alleged attacker.

The assistant medical examiner, Bill Gormley, told the court that he discovered bruises to Love's chest, knuckles, forearms, lower back, buttocks and upper thigh area.

Gormley said that bruising discovered under Love's chin, inside lip and abrasions on her cheek could be consistent with smothering.  He did not specify how she could have been suffocated, but said the hemorrhaging of tissue found under her neck "could reflect pressure, which could've led to death."

As Gormley described Love's extensive injuries, Huguely sat with his face in his hands.

Photos detailing Love's bruises were shown only to the judge, jurors, Huguely and attorneys.  The public and press could not see them.

Gormley explained to the court how medical examiners who dissected Love's brain found that the right side had areas of hemorrhaging.  Smothering, however, was not the cause of death, he told the court.

"Dissection of soft tissue under Love's neck showed hemorrhaging that suggests pressure of blunt force trauma," Gormley said.

Love's official cause of death was blunt force trauma to the head.

In the defense's cross-examination, Gormley was asked if the injuries Love sustained on her face could have happened with a single impact blow.  He said yes.

Gormley conceded that all of Love's injuries could have happened with a single event, which is consistent with the defense's claim that Huguely and Love wrestled on the ground.

It was also pointed out that bruising can be caused by a number of things aside from force, like medications.

Huguely, 24, is charged with first degree murder as well as five other charges in the death of Love.

Love, 22, was a star lacrosse player at the University of Virginia and a senior just weeks away from graduation.  Huguely was also a lacrosse player for the school's nationally ranked team.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Feb112012

Excessive Alcohol Consumption a Recurring Issue at Huguely Trial

Comstock/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- Murder suspect George Huguely estimated to a police officer that he had as many as 20 drinks the day that he broke into his ex-girlfriend's room and, police charge, killed her.

Huguely's alleged victim, Yeardley Love, had also spent much of that day drinking. An autopsy determined that her blood alcohol level was about twice the legal limit.

Heavy drinking in a culture of elite level college lacrosse -- Huguely and Love both played on the University of Virginia's nationally ranked lacrosse teams -- has been a recurring theme during Huguely's murder trial this past week.

Huguely, 24, is charged with first degree murder as well as five other charges in the death of Love.

Love, 22, was just weeks away from graduation when her battered and lifeless body was found in her bedroom early Monday morning on May 3, 2010, several hours after Huguely paid her an angry visit.

On Sunday May 2, 2010, Huguely began the day drinking at a father-son golfing tournament, where friends said he was already inebriated enough at tee-time to be struggling to hit the ball.

"He was acting different than normal," Tim Fuchs, one of Huguely's lacrosse teammates testified. Fuchs said that she saw Huguely at 9 a.m. and could tell he had been drinking.

Fuchs saw him again at 5 p.m. and told the court that Huguely was drunk, slurring his words and making inappropriate jokes despite the presence of his father.

Love had also spent her final day alive drinking.

Caitlin Whiteley, Love's roommate who discovered her body, testified that Love and a group of friends had been drinking at a brunch at popular UVA burger bar Boylan Heights from noon to 3 p.m. Whiteley said she and Love went back to their apartment to do school work from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. They then returned to Boylan Heights for a friend's birthday party, where there was more drinking until 10 p.m.

Whiteley testified that Love was "kind of drunk, but not so out of control drunk." Whiteley went out again and Love stayed home, saying she might meet up with her later.

Love's blood alcohol level was .16 or .18, according to the defense attorneys. The legal limit in Virginia is .08.

The trial is expected to continue at least through next week.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Feb092012

UVA Lacrosse Murder Defense: Death Was an Accident

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- The lawyer for George Huguely V essentially conceded in his opening statement Wednesday that the former University of Virginia lacrosse player killed his ex-girlfriend Yeardley Love, but said it was an accident.

Huguely is charged with first degree murder as well as other charges, but defense attorney Francis McQ. Lawrence told the jury in his opening statement that her death was not something Huguely planned or wanted to happen.

"Involuntary manslaughter could and should be only thought at this time.  Please take careful deliberation," Lawrence said.

He repeatedly said that Huguely, 24, had "no intent" to kill Love.

"He's not complicated. He's not complex. He's a lacrosse player," Lawrence said.

But prosecutors in their opening statement told the jury that Huguely, furious that Love, 22, had slept with someone else, had sent her a menancing email just days before she died on May 2, 1010.

"I should have killed you," the email stated.

Among the witnesses on the first day of testimony was Love's roommate and friend Caitlin Whiteley, who discovered Love's body on the night of her death.

"She wasn't moving," an tearful Whiteley told the jury.  "I remember that her body was still warm, but her feet were cold."

Whiteley described Love's body on the bed and that she noticed, "how discolored she was and her face and eyes were so messed up."

An enraged Huguely allegedly kicked through the door of Love's bedroom the night she died and shook her, banging her head against the wall, before leaving her bleeding. Her face was covered in scrapes and bruises, according to a police warrant, and her right eye was swollen shut.

The defense claims that Huguely left Love's apartment thinking that she just had a nose bleed. They also said that he took her computer because he wanted to use it later to make it necessary for her to see him.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb082012

Jury Selection Complete in UVA Lacrosse Murder Trial

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- A jury of seven men and seven women was selected Wednesday for the murder trial of former University of Virginia lacrosse player George Huguely, accused of killing his ex-girlfriend and classmate Yeardley Love.

In addition to the dozen jurors, two alternates were selected for the trial that is expected to last two weeks in Charlottesville, Va. It's not clear the make-up of the 12 who will be the main jury. It took two days for the court to whittle down the pool of 160 potential jurors to 15. During questioning, many said they would not be able to be impartial in the trial.

Opening arguments are expected to be presented Wednesday.

Huguely, 24, pleaded not guilty on Monday to charges of first-degree murder and five other charges.

Love, 22, was found dead face-down in a pool of blood in the early hours of May 3, 2010 in her off-campus apartment in Charlottesville. Her face was covered in scrapes and bruises, according to a police warrant, and her right eye was swollen shut.

Love was a star lacrosse player at the school and a senior just weeks away from graduation.

Huguely, also a lacrosse player for the school's nationally ranked team, waived his Miranda rights in interviews with police after Love was found and confessed that he kicked in the door to Love's bedroom and shook her violently, repeatedly banging her head against the wall, according to police documents.

His attorneys have since claimed that Love's murder was a tragic mistake and that Love's death was caused by an irregular heartbeat caused by Adderall and alcohol, not a beating.

An autopsy performed on Love found that she died from blunt force trauma to the head.

If convicted of first degree murder, Huguely could be sentenced to life in prison. He could face 40 years if convicted of second degree murder. A manslaughter conviction could lower the sentence to 10 years.

Huguely's arrest in Love's case was not his first run-in with the law. He had been arrested before for resisting arrest and public intoxication, charged with reckless driving and involved in a domestic dispute with his father on the family yacht.

Huguely is being held without bond in the Albermarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Feb062012

UVA Lacrosse Murder Trial: George Huguely Pleads Not Guilty

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- Former University of Virginia lacrosse player George Huguely pleaded not guilty Monday to six charges, including first-degree murder, in the 2010 death of his ex-girlfriend and classmate Yeardley Love.

Jury selection began Monday for the trial that is expected to last through next week. The court is choosing 12 jurors and three alternates from a pool of 160 potential jurors. The jurors are from Charlottesville, Va., and will not be sequestered during the trial.

Huguely, 24, appeared in court where he pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder, felony murder in a robbery or attempted robbery, burglary, robbery of a residence, grand larceny, and entering a house with intention to commit a felony, according to media reports.

Love, 22, was found dead face-down in a pool of blood in the early hours of May 3, 2010 in her off-campus apartment in Charlottesville. Her face was covered in scrapes and bruises, according to a police warrant, and her right eye was swollen shut.

Love was a star lacrosse player at the school and a senior, just weeks away from graduation. Her murder rocked the tight-knit college town and became a source of national attention.

Huguely, also a lacrosse player for the school's nationally ranked team, waived his Miranda rights in interviews with police after Love was found, and confessed that he kicked in the door to Love's bedroom and shook her violently, repeatedly banging her head against the wall, according to police documents.

His attorneys have since claimed that Love's murder was a tragic mistake and that Love's death was caused by an irregular heartbeat caused by Adderall and alcohol, not a brutal beating. They also claim that Huguely did not know Love had died until he was told by a detective.

An autopsy performed on Love found that she died from blunt force trauma to the head.

If convicted of first degree murder, Huguely could be sentenced to life in prison. He could face 40 years if convicted of second degree murder. A manslaughter conviction could lower the sentence to 10 years.

Huguely is being held without bond in the Albermarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Feb062012

UVA Lacrosse Player Murder Trial to Begin Monday

Hemera/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- The trial of a young man accused of murdering his girlfriend, University of Virginia lacrosse player Yeardley Love, is expected to begin on Monday.

Love's murder shocked the University of Virginia campus when the 22-year-old was found face down and bloodied in her Charlottesville, Va., apartment in the early morning hours of May 3, 2010.  Fellow lacrosse player and romantic interest George Huguely, 23, was charged with her murder.

Details of what happened between the couple suggests that just three days before Love was found dead she had lashed out against Huguely, according to two search warrant affidavits.

One of Love's sorority sisters told authorities that she witnessed an "altercation" between her friend and Huguely during which, "Love hit Huguely with her purse" hard enough to cause all of its contents to be strewn about his apartment.

Later, the friend told police Love realized that her cellphone and camera were missing, and that she, "believed it was still at Huguely's apartment." Love recovered the camera, but never got her cellphone back, according to the statement.

Days later, Love was dead and Huguely slapped with a first-degree murder charge.

A redacted email exchange between Love and Huguely is also included in the court documents and is believed to have contained discussion of the couple's recent breakup.

Huguely's attorney has long argued that Love's murder was a tragic mistake, and Huguely at the time waved his Miranda rights and told authorities exactly what had happened the night she was killed.

Huguely confessed to police, according to search warrants in the case, that in the early morning hours of May 3, 2010, he kicked in the door to Love's bedroom and shook her violently, repeatedly banging her head against the wall.  Love's body was found later that day after an early morning 911 call, face down on her pillow in a pool of blood.  Her face was covered in scrapes and bruises, according to the warrant, and her right eye was swollen shut.

Defense attorneys for Huguely have argued that the girl's death was caused by drugs -- the attention deficit disorder drug Adderall was found in her system -- and not by a brutal beating that left her battered and bloodied.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Apr112011

Virginia Lacrosse Murder Trial Holds Preliminary Hearing

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- When University of Virginia lacrosse player George Huguely was questioned by police about the bludgeoning death of his ex-girlfriend, a detective told him bluntly, "She's dead, you killed her George, you killed her."

The police interview was read in court Monday during a preliminary hearing in the Charlottesville, Va., general district court. The hearing is to demonstrate there is probable cause a crime was committed in the May 3, 2010 death of Yeardley Love, Huguely's on-again, off-again girlfriend. Both were members of the school's nationally ranked lacrosse teams.

During Monday's hearing, Huguely, 23, was present by video conference as his lawyer Fran Lawrence told the court that his client did not intend to kill Love. Lawrence read from a detective's report in which he said during his interview with Huguely, "She's dead, you killed her George, you killed her," according to ABC News affiliate WTBD.

According to the detective's report, Huguely replied in disbelief, "I never did anything that could do that to her."

Defense attorneys for Huguely have argued that Love's death was caused by drugs and not by a brutal beating.

The 22-year-old Love was found face down and bloodied in her Charlottesville, Va., apartment. Her death came days after she told Huguely she was breaking off their relationship. Love's family issued a statement before Monday's hearing.

"We have faith in the justice system and trust that the truth will prevail," the family said. "We miss Yeardley so very much and will work tirelessly to make her proud of us. It is truly devastating to wake up each day and realize she is no longer here."

The Loves' statement continues: "Her bright, bright future was stolen from us all. Yeardley's contagious smile, kind spirit and gentle touch have left this world but we know heaven now has an angel like no other. We will never be able to sufficiently thank everyone for their outpouring of love, support and prayers. They have given us the strength to continue and we are eternally grateful to each and every one of them. "

Huguely's attorney has argued that Love's murder was a tragic accident, and Huguely at the time waived his Miranda rights and told authorities exactly what had happened the night she was killed.

Huguely confessed to police, according to search warrants in the case, that in the early morning hours on a Monday, he kicked in the door to Love's bedroom and shook her violently, repeatedly banging her head against the wall.

Love's body was found later Monday after an early morning 911 call, face down on her pillow in a pool of blood. Her face was covered in scrapes and bruises, according to the warrant, and her right eye was swollen shut.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio 







ABC News Radio