Defense Attorney Scott Goodman visited the Newsplex Thursday night, to discuss what we can expect to see in the courtroom for the George Huguely murder trial.
Goodman, who has no ties to the case, says the two biggest things in the case will be the testimony from the medical examiner from Richmond. He will testify his opinion on the cause of death, which he says was blunt force trauma.
Goodman says the other large item in the case is the taped statement police took from George Huguely when he was arrested.
" He makes several admissions and other explanations of his activity on the night in question. This of course will be a very important piece of evidence and could be the way the Commonwealth wants to wrap up their case if they decide to play that tape last," said Goodman.
February 9, 2012
Testimony Thursday afternoon in the George Huguely murder trial painted a picture of a relationship laden with infidelity, physical abuse and drama.
The prosecution called friends, roommates and even a romantic rival to reveal the tumultuous relationship between Yeardley Love and her accused killer.
Mike Burns, who played lacrosse at North Carolina and "hooked up" with Love several times, testified Love was crying when Huguely had his arm around her neck at a party following a UVA men's lacrosse victory in February 2010. He was visiting friends at UVA at the time.
Burns said Love was screaming "help me" from Huguely's apartment. He told the court he burst into the room to find Huguely had Love in a chokehold. Burns said Huguely let go and Love fled when he walked into the bedroom.
Commonwealth's Attorney Dave Chapman said that incident started a chain of events that culminated with Love's death. In addition, it was one day after that incident that Sharon Love, Yeardley's mother, said her daughter visited home and was "visibly shaken".
Next to testify was Brian Carroll, a teammate of Huguely's and the twin brother of the defendant's roommate. He said Huguely told him he choked Love because "he wanted to talk but she didn't." Carroll continued, telling the court about another incident on Apr. 27, 2010, five days before Love's death. He said Love and Huguely got into an argument because she found two high school girls - softball players on a recruiting visit to UVA - with him in his apartment. Carroll said Love yelled, "Are these your new girlfriends? Are these the girls you've been texting?"
Kate Kamber, a friend of the couple who dated Huguely's roommate, Kevin Carroll, also testified about that evening. She told the court she heard Love yelling and heard her hit Huguely with her purse.
Brian Carroll continued his testimony, saying Huguely was drunk at 9 a.m. on May 2, 2010. The two were together at Wintergreen Resort for a father-son golf outing following the final men's lacrosse game of the regular season. Carroll said Huguely's friends were all worried about his drinking, which had gotten out of control.
Huguely's defense maintains Love died in part by taking the prescription drug Adderall and drinking alcohol. However, Dr. Danny Mistry, the primary care physician for all UVA student-athletes, said Love took Adderall to control her ADD and ADHD. While he agreed the drug would induce a change in a person's heartbeat, Dr. Mistry said Love was cleared to play lacrosse after an EKG showed she didn't have a heart abnormality.
Four first responders and an emergency room doctor took the stand Thursday morning in Charlottesville Circuit Court, as witness testimony continued in the George Huguely murder trial.
Charlottesville Police Officer K.W. Blackwell, the first officer to arrive at Yeardley Love's 14th Street apartment in the early morning hours of May 3, 2010, testified that he thought he was responding to an alcohol overdose but quickly discovered Love had been bruised and bloodied.
Blackwell, who got to Love's apartment at approximately 2:20 a.m., said he saw a female lying on her back. Her eye was swollen shut, dried blood was on her body and there was an abrasion under her eye. He reported also seeing a hole in Love's bedroom door. It was at that point, Blackwell testified, he realized he was dealing with a crime scene.
During prosecution questioning, Blackwell said Love was not breathing when he found her and he attempted to revive her. On cross-examination, defense attorney Fran Lawrence asked Blackwell to describe how Love's room was arranged. He also asked if Blackwell touched or moved any potential evidence, to which the officer answered, no.
The next witness for the prosecution was first responder Michael Hanshew, who also arrived around 2: 20 a.m. He said he saw a female lying on the floor and began working to revive her, but after 25 minutes of CPR Hanshew said Love showed "no signs of life".
Lexie Love began to cry as Commonwealth's Attorney Dave Chapman showed Hanshew pictures of him administering CPR to Love's lifeless body.
The defense asked Hanshew if administering CPR can cause bruises to blacken and wounds to bleed. He answered that it is possible, but said he believes that didn't happen to Love. Two other first responders were called by the prosecution to corroborate Hanshew's testimony. They both said they saw a hole in Love's door and that Hanshew and other EMTs administered CPR correctly.
Dr. William Brady, the chair of the resuscitation subcommittee at the University of Virginia Medical Center, reviewed the autopsy report in court and also testified that first responders administered CPR appropriately.
Huguely's attorneys have said he was very drunk the night Love died and incapable of plotting to kill her. They have also argued that first responders administered CPR incorrectly by, among other things, putting their hands on Love's neck, which contributed to her death. They have disputed that she died of blunt-force trauma.
Trial Day 4 Preview
Legal experts expect more witnesses will take the stand Thursday morning to testify in the George Huguely murder trial.
Prosecutors are expected to continue setting the scene on Day 4 of the trial by using photographs and other evidence to paint a picture of what happened in Yeardley Love's bedroom the night she died.
During the first day of testimony, the jury heard from Love's mother, Sharon, and sister, Lexie, along with the roommate who found her body.
Thursday, legal experts say prosecutors will focus more on the crime scene. They also expect police officers to testify about the first hours of their investigation.
“They'll describe the scene, the evidence they found, photographs they took. I'm sure they'll show photos to the jury, physical items that they will identify that's been recovered, and those items will be shown to the jury. They'll be able to see for themselves. They'll be circulated around,” said Scott Goodman, a local defense attorney.
Goodman, who is not affiliated with the Huguely case, says we should also expect to hear from more of Love's friends. He expects them to talk about things that happened on Sunday, May 2, 2010 prior to the homicide.
Prosecutors are expected to call 27 more witnesses to the stand.
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