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Tuesday, May 4, 2010

George Huguely Charged With Yeardley Love's Death

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UVA Women's Lacrosse Player Dead, Men's Player Charged With Murder

A University of Virginia men's lacrosse player was charged Monday with first-degree murder in the death of a women's lacrosse player at the same school.

George Huguely, 22, of Chevy Chase, Md., has been charged in the death of Yeardley Love, 22, of Cockeysville, Md., Charlottesville Police Chief Timothy Longo said. Both were seniors.

Longo said Love's roommate called police around 2:15 a.m. concerned that Love may have had an alcohol overdose, but police found her dead with obvious physical injuries.

"It was quickly apparent to them that this young lady was the victim of something far worse," Longo said.

Longo said Huguely quickly became the focus. He wouldn't say what led investigators to Huguely or detail the extent of Love's injuries. He said there did not appear to be any weapons.

Love and Huguely were in a relationship at some point, Longo said. Huguely lived nearby, but not in the same apartment complex, he said.

Huguely was being held in the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail.

Huguely and Love were scheduled to graduate later this month. Leonard Sandridge, executive vice president of the university, said the campus was saddened over Love's death.

He added the shock is magnified by the fact that the accused is "one of our own," he told reporters.

Both highly ranked teams are preparing for the national tournament later this month. Virginia's men's team was ranked No. 1 for most of the season and expects to host a first-round game in the tournament after winning the Atlantic Coast Conference championship last month.

The women's team also was expected to get into the tournament.

Huguely, a midfielder, wasn't a starter but played in all 15 games this season. He had four goals and three assists. Love played defense and started in three games this season.

When asked how the death would affect the upcoming tournament, athletics director Craig Littlepage said it was "not even entering into our thoughts" but that for the players' sake they wanted to "try to get back to some things that are normal."

Love was "a person who was described as an angel by teammates and friends," Littlepage said.

Love played varsity lacrosse and field hockey for four years at Notre Dame Preparatory School in Baltimore.

"Yeardley was an outstanding young lady - joyous, spirited a wonderful person," said Sister Patricia McCarron, headmistress of the school. "I know we all enjoyed watching her on the lacrosse field and seeing her walk the hallways at NDP. We are proud to call Yeardley 'one of our girls."'

Mary Bartel, who coached Yeardley in lacrosse at Notre Dame Prep, said, "Yeardley was the core of the personality of the team. She was our laughter, a good soul. She always found an appropriate way to lighten things up.

"I don't think there is a soul in this building who couldn't say her name without smiling. Yeardley loved NDP, and NDP loved her. She was a good soul and an outstanding athlete."

University president John Casteen said in a release on the university's website that Love's death "moves us to deep anguish for the loss of a student of uncommon talent and promise."

"That she appears now to have been murdered by another student compounds this sense of loss by suggesting that Yeardley died without comfort or consolation from those closest to her," Casteen said.

Casteen said Love did not deserve to die.

"She deserved the bright future she earned growing up, studying here, and developing her talents as a lacrosse player," he said. "She deserves to be remembered for her human goodness, her capacity for future greatness, and for the terrible way in which her young life has ended."

In a 2006 interview with The Washington Post, Huguely defended his former high school teammates at Landon School. "In this country, you're supposed to be innocent until prove guilty," he told the paper.

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Sources: MSNBC, Google Maps, Virginia

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