August 22, 2012
A Charlottesville judge Wednesday rejected George Huguely's request for a new trial in the slaying of his ex-girlfriend.
The former University of Virginia lacrosse player was convicted in February of murdering women's lacrosse player Yeardley Love in her apartment in May 2010.
At a hearing on Wednesday, Huguely's defense raised several issues that occurred during the trial that would warrant a new trial. The judge denied all those motions.
Among their arguments, the defense claimed attorney Rhonda Quagliana's absence during part of the trial was unfair to Huguely. Quagliana missed a few days of the trial because of an illness. Her co-counsel, Fran Lawrence had to cross-examine a witness that Quagliana prepared for. Judge Edward Hogshire said both lawyers were highly qualified and that Quagliana's absence did not lend to the perception of prejudice for the jury.
The defense also argued that the jury should have been sequestered during the trial. Hogshire responded that the request was unreasonable, hypothetically asking "how do you sequester a jury in the 21st century."
In the end, Hogshire ruled there was sufficient evidence for the jury to find Huguely guilty of both 2nd degree murder and grand larceny. He said the defense can begin the process of moving the case to the appellate court as soon as the sentence is handed down.
Sentencing is scheduled for August 30. Huguely faces up to 26 years in prison.