Huguely jurors told of fights and threats

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Local,Virginia,Emily Babay

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA. -- George Huguely V fought with Yeardley Love and threatened in an email to kill her before he allegedly beat her to death, according to statements made in court Wednesday.

The University of Virginia lacrosse player from Chevy Chase is on trial for the May 2010 slaying of 22-year-old Love, of Cockeysville, Md.

The week before Love's bloodied body was found in her bed, Huguely sent Love an email about her relationship with another man that said "I should have killed you," prosecutor Dave Chapman said in his opening statement.

"The next time George Huguely saw her alone, he killed her," Chapman said.

Prosecutors say Love suffered contusions to and bleeding in her brain when she was beaten by Huguely, her former boyfriend.

But Huguely, now 24, only went to Love's apartment that night to talk to her and had no idea she was killed during their fight, defense attorney Francis McQ. Lawrence said in his opening statement.

"They had somewhat of a discussion and somewhat of an encounter," he said. Huguely "tossed her onto the bed, and then he left," Lawrence said.

Lawrence said Love's death was "unintended and unexpected" and Huguely was "unaware that she was injured in a significant way" until police officers told him she had died.

Love was found slain in the early hours of May 3, when one of her roommates returned from a night of partying.

Caitlin Whiteley testified that she tried to awaken Love, then moved the young woman's hair and saw blood on her face.

"She wasn't moving," Whitely said. Love's roommates testified that she had shared the emails from Huguely during a lacrosse trip a few days earlier.

In his opening statement, Chapman said Huguely tried to choke Love at a party a few months earlier.

Love was "hysterical" after that incident, Whiteley said. She testified that she spoke to Huguely about the matter, and he "was angry at [Love] for telling other people about it."

Lawrence said that both parties in the relationship had been unfaithful and Love once repeatedly hit Huguely with her purse.

The defense has indicated it will challenge a medical examiner's ruling that Love died from blunt-force trauma to the head. Huguely's attorneys have argued at previous hearings that Love died from an irregular heartbeat caused by mixing an attention deficit disorder medication with alcohol.

Seven men and seven women -- 12 jurors and two alternates -- were selected Wednesday morning to decide the case.

ebabay@washingtonexaminer.com

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Emily Babay

Digital News Editor
The Washington Examiner