January 4, 2012
With the George Huguely murder trial one month away, the City of Charlottesville is planning for the national media attention and large crowds.
Former University of Virignia student and lacrosse player George Huguely faces six charges in connection to the death of his ex-girlfriend, Yeardley Love.
The trial begins February 5 and will likely last until February 17. During that time, the road adjacent to Charlottesville Circuit Court, where the trial will take place, will be closed and reserved for media satellite trucks.
"Certainly around the courthouse we want everything to remain accessible and safe. There will be undoubtedly some disruptions, particularly on 4th street and in front of the courthouse," said Rick Barrick. "I would say, during the trial period, if you don't have business in that area or you don't have a reason to be in that area, staying away is advisable."
If you do want to watch the trial, a closed Jury Selection will take place for the first two days, then the general public will be allowed to sit in on the trial.
The courtroom seats a little more than 130 people, so only 80 seats will be available for the general public. The seats will be distributed to the public either by lottery or by first-come-first-serve.
Anyone will be able to follow along with the days proceedings online. Evidence and documents presented in court will be scanned and posted online.
City of Charlottesville spokesman, Ric Barrick says the city's preparations for the Huguely trial are modeled after the Washington DC Sniper trial which took place in Chesapeake. The two cities have been in communication with each other, so Charlottesville can use them as a road-map on how to plan for the highly publicized case.
Charges against Huguely include, Murder in the First Degree, Robbery, Burglary in the Nighttime, Breaking and Entering, Grand Larceny and Murder in the Commission of a Felony.
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