George Huguely Trial: What’s The Defense

8/31/2012: Huguely sentenced to 23 years in prison. Defense recommended 14 years and prosecution argued for 25 years. Love’s family has filed civil suits against Huguely and UVA (Huguely was reported to UVA for prior violence-beating up a lacrosse player).

2/23/2012 Update: Huguely convicted of second degree murder. Jury recommends 26 years in prison. Maximum sentence is 40 years. Sentencing in April 2012. Jury deliberated 9 hours.

In response to this tragedy, Virginia now has a new law allowing protective orders in dating relationships. And, according to Kristi VanAudenhove of the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance, “Yeardley Love’s death resulted in a great awakening for many individuals in Virginia and across the country about the dangers that exists in violent dating relationships. It has also sparked conversations at colleges and universities about how to improve policies and services for students experiencing sexual and domestic violence.”


Get drunk, kick down your ex-girlfriend’s locked bedroom door, and violently shake her as her head repeatedly hits the wall and leave her in a pool of blood to die a painful death. That’s exactly what George Huguely, a 24-year-old UVA lacrosse player, allegedly admitted to, yet, the defense claims he had no intent to kill his ex-girlfriend, Yeardley Love, and his actions weren’t the cause of her death. Complete acquittal? No murder. No manslaughter. Just an accident.

The defense claims she “suffocated” in her pillow. She had a blood alcohol level of .14. She had an “abnormal brain”. And, the head injuries weren’t the cause of her death.


The coroner found “blunt force trauma” to her head to be the cause of death. What explains the facial abrasions, the swollen shut right eye and the pool of blood?

Does it matter that she ended the relationship after he had her in a choke-hold witnessed by several Chapel Hill lacrosse players and that had hit her before? Does it matter that he sent her an email, “I should have killed you”, when he found out she was dating someone new?

Does the “I was drunk” defense negate intent to kill or premeditation ( first degree murder)? Isn’t ingesting alcohol a premeditated, deliberate and intentional act? And, waiting until she was home asleep in the early morning hours to kick down her door, isn’t that further evidence of premeditation and deliberation?

Or, do we give him a break because he was a jilted drunk college jock. Why? Drunk drivers are held accountable.

But, maybe, when it comes to dating relationships, murder just isn’t murder, it’s an accident. After all, I’m sure the defense will next claim, he loved her.

Domestic violence isn’t about love, it’s about power and control. And, Yeardley Love’s death is another tragic example of what happens when women leave.

Simply my opinion, what say you?


3 Comments on “George Huguely Trial: What’s The Defense”

  1. I think, like many other people who only see the case from one angle – much like the 2006 Duke lacrosse case – you already have your opinion about the situation. What needs to be kept in mind here is the actuality of the situation. You are harping on the sensational. Is it absolutely tragic that a beautiful 22 year old woman lost her life? Absolutely. Is it more tragic that more than likely her boyfriend who had an obvious alcohol and anger problem, caused her death in some way? Of course. This isn’t “what happened when Yeardley left”. no whre in any court filings does it say “george tried to kill Huguely because she threatened to leave him”. Two days previous, they were on tape holding hands. This was a volatile and tumultuous relationship. But, like other people who simply want to see Huguely sent to jail for life for first degree murder, even if it WASN’T first degree murder, just because he was a drunken a**hole who got physical with his on/off gf, you only report the dramatic side. Don’t you think if he “beat her head against the wall” hard enough to cause brain damage, there would be so much as a SMUDGE on the dry wall? There was NOTHING on the drywall, and drywall isn’t exactly durable. The fact that he went to her apartment late? THEY WERE IN COLLEGE. I can’t count how many times I had 2am meet ups with my friends, or wandered over to an apartment of a boyfriend drunk and late. I don’t think he was “waiting for her to fall asleep”. I think he was out all day and then for dinner and at that point, was drunk, emotional and ended up there at the end of the night.

    My opinion? The kid was an obnoxious drunk with a bad temper who was in a volatile relationship that involved cheating and tempers on both sides. He got completely sh**faced all day, went to her apartment to talk to her, yell at her, whatever, she locked him out, he kicked the door in, they got into a fight, she had obviously also had a couple drinks in her, it got physical, he hit her, perhaps she fell or hit her head on a desk, she got up and he threw her on the bed, left knowing “f*** I just made a girl bleed”, she laid in bed probably in pain, maybe a little drunk, and I think she may have passed out and suffocated, or from hitting her head, she died.

    I do not for one second believe that kid got sh**faced all day and then PLANNED to walk over to her apartment and hit her so hard that he killed her. Is what he did wrong? Absolutely, any kind of violence is terrible. Do I think she died as a result of their altercation? More than likely. Do I think he did killed her on purpose? Not at all.

    As for the “I should have killed you”, both my roommate and I agree, if we were charged with murder, or making a threat everytime I said “dude, I’m going to kill you” when we were angry at someone, we’d have like 102 consecutive life sentences. i do not believe for a second that was him threatening her, I think it was just a bad choice of wording that we all use, but conveniently FORGET we use when we can use it against someone. You want to sit there and tell me you’ve never said “I’m going to kill you for that”, then I’d cal you a bold faced liar.

    Look back on the article you wrote here, how sensationalized it is. You’re holding on to some facts that haven’t even been proven true just because it makes this kid look even worse and hyping up others just to perpetuate the idea that no matter what the defense said, this kid is absolutely guilty of first degree murder. And yes, actually, in Virginia law, being drunk DOES matter as in first degree murder, it rules out the possibility that a murder plot could have been “premeditated”. So whether you agree or not, the truth is, it does matter and will matter her. Don’t like it? Don’t hate on the guy for using it to his benefit, hate on the state of Virginia and its lawmakers for deciding being intoxicated matters in first degree murder charges. No one is “giving him a pass” because he was drunk. But the law recognizes that you don’t make the same decisions drunk as you might sober. As for DUI, DUI law is different in every state, but I have never heard of someone who is convicted of killing someone in a DUI convicted of first degree murder. So your analogy is apples and oranges and makes no sense.

    Is he getting off for being a jock? No. Are you automatically assuming he is a cold blooded killer who rationally said to himself “I want to murder my girlfriend” BECAUSE he was a jock? In my opinion, yes. The law should be free from emotion and passion. I can understand how badly people would want to see almost an “eye for an eye” situation here because it’s obvious his actions caused her death and the loss is TREMENDOUS. But there is a huge difference between causing a person’s death and deliberately murdering someone with intention.

  2. Jill Estensen says:

    But he’s a sports hero, they don’t get punished the same way the rest of the people get punished. FACT not fiction.

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