Former University of Virginia lacrosse player George Huguely was sentenced to 23 years in prison yesterday for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Yeardley Love.
The high-profile case began May 3,2010 when Love, a senior lacrosse player at UVa, died of blunt-force trauma. She was found in her apartment after Huguely had broken in and beaten her while intoxicated. It was days before the two would graduate.
Huguely was convicted by a jury of second-degree murder and grand larceny in February during a two week trial. The jury in the sentencing trial originally gave Huguely a sentence of 26 years, which was reduced to 23 by Circuit Judge Edward Hogshire.
Huguely and Love’s relationship was painted as a volatile on again off again affair during trial, but Huguely denied being responsible for her death, saying that she beat her own head against the wall.
According to CBS station WCAV in Charlottesville Huguely addressed the court after closing arguments.
“Mrs. Love and Lexie, I’m so sorry for your loss. I hope that you are able to find peace. I want to thank my family and friends for all the love and support,” he said.
Lexie is Love’s sister.
The Love family still has two pending civil suits against Huguely and UVa athletic and lacrosse officials and lawyers for Huguely say they will appeal the sentence
The Love family released the following statement:
The Love family did not speak to the assembled media following Thursday’s court hearing only releasing the following statement:
“We would like to thank everyone who worked so tirelessly on Yeardley’s behalf. In particular, we would like to thank Dave Chapman for his dedication and compassion. Don’t know how we would have gotten through the past two years without him.
We find no joy in others’ sorrow. We plan to work diligently through the One Love Foundation to try and prevent this from happening to another family.
We are relieved to put this chapter behind us. Again, we would like to thank everyone for showing us such kindness during the most difficult time of our lives.
Sharon and Lexie Love”