Preliminary hearing today for Huguely in UVA murder - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Preliminary hearing today for Huguely in UVA murder

Yeardley Love Yeardley Love
George Huguely George Huguely

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA (WWBT) – A preliminary court hearing for the man accused of killing his former girlfriend and UVA lacrosse player Yeardley Love took place Monday in Charlottesville. George Huguely, 23, is charged with first degree murder in Love's death. 

Huguely was not in the courtroom. He waved his right to be there. This is a preliminary hearing. The judge will only decide whether or not the charges should move forward to a higher court.    

Monday, we learned a woman who lived directly below Love, heard loud bangs and noises coming from Love's room the night she died. She also testified she saw a man fitting Huguely's description leaving the apartment minutes later. 

May 2nd, nearly a year ago...Yeardley Love had been out for dinner and drinks with friends. She and her roommate went home to get ready to go out again, when Love decided to stay in and sleep. It was the last time she was seen alive.    

Her roommate and a friend arrived home after 2:00. They noticed her bedroom door had a hole through it.  They tried to wake Love and found a pool of blood under her head. Love was wearing only underwear, her eye was swollen shut. She was bruised on her chin and bleeding from her head, nose and mouth. 

Families for both sides were in the courtroom Monday. Several friends testified that Huguely and Love dated on and off for four years. They were off again at the time of her murder. Her roommate testified the two fought over their future. He wanted to move to California after graduation. She wanted to be close to her family in Maryland. 

Huguely's attorney told the judge, "George had no intention of killing Ms. Love and that he was unaware she was even dead" when police first picked him up. 

He says when Huguely found out, he was hysterical and told police quote, I never did anything that could do that to her." 

Defense attorneys say they will put on witnesses Monday that show Huguely was drunk the night of Love's death, but not distraught or acting weird in anyway. Prosecutors maintain Huguely knew what he was doing when he came to Love's room that night. The hearing is still underway.    

A judge will decide whether there's enough probable cause to send this case to a grand jury. If the case moves forward, the grand jury could get this case next week....April 18th. 

Yeardley Love's sister and mother say they have faith in the justice system and trust that the truth will prevail. In a statement released today, they said "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." 

Copyright 2011 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.

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