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Posted at 10:12 AM ET, 12/22/2010

Review of Love's medical records denied

By Matt Zapotosky


A Charlottesville General District Court judge ruled Wednesday that defense attorneys cannot review years of medical records for the University of Virginia lacrosse player slain in May, saying there was nothing unusual or relevant to the case in the documents.

In a hearing that lasted about five minutes, Judge Robert H. Downer Jr said that defense attorneys for George Huguely V, accused of slaying his on again, off again girlfriend Yeardley Love, could look at Love's Adderall prescription -- which was already public knowledge -- but nothing else in her medical records. He said those records showed Love hadn't taken any prescription drugs she was not prescribed, had no unusual problems with dieting and were generally not relevant to the case.

Defense attorneys had sought the records in an attempt to show Love died from a cardiac arrhythmia causing insufficient blood flow to the head, rather than blunt force trauma inflicted by Huguely. A state medical examiner had ruled blunt force trauma to the head killed Love.

Check out Crime Scene for more details.


By Matt Zapotosky  | December 22, 2010; 10:12 AM ET
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety, Virginia  
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Comments

Does Huguely's family and legal councel have no shame? Oh, wait, they're entitled members of the upper crust and know no shame. I forgot.

Seriously!?!? You beat the crap out of someone, pound their head off the wall, and want to blame it on the victim & medicine?

There is no punishment severe enough for Huguely - execution is too good for this dirtbag. His entire life, he was given what he wanted - and the first time someone said "No" and dumped him, he kills them out of jealousy, pride, acting like a spoiled brat.

Posted by: Disbelief | December 22, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

time to reform the judiciary.... but obama and his lawyer friends will never admit a darn thing is wrong.

somehow, the judge should be able to fine the defense for crap like this.... somehow compensate the state for having to fight such absurd claims.

US has the best legal system the defendant can afford.

Posted by: docwhocuts | December 22, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Huguely needs to be placed in general population at some horrible prison as soon as possible so that he can learn exactly what blunt force trauma really is. He will definitely be fresh me on the block. Since his defense counsel won't be able to blame anything on his victim, I guess the next defense will be temporary insanity or emotional immaturity so that he goes to a mental institution instead of prison where animals like him belong. This is what happens when there is a lack of discipline in the home. Look at the instances of trouble that he got into while he was a "prestigious" The Landon School. Richy rich thug is all he is.

Posted by: BROWNGA33 | December 22, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

YOU BEAT THIS YOUNG LADY TO DEATH. STOP TRYING TO BLAME HER FOR THE MISTAKE OF ACCEPTING YOU INTO HER WORLD. MAN UP.

Posted by: skinfreak | December 22, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

This place is gonna explode when he cuts a deal for thirty years. He was drunk as hell - just like his daddy has been for much of little George's life - and that unfortunately will be a mitigating circumstance. Murderous intent will be impossible to prove because of the hours and hours and hours of alcohol consumption that prefaced Huguely's actions.

Posted by: lingering_lead | December 22, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Docwhocuts..............what the heck does this have to do with Obama??????????? Of course this type of legal stuff is totally ridiculous. But it is and has been the system for years. It's up to the Judge to do what he did. And that's the system too. I'm surprised you didn't blame Clinton too.

Posted by: dentaf | December 22, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

George Huguely V needs to face charges of capital murder and go to trial. George the V will be held accountable for beating the innocent girl to death. He will be put to death. End of Story. No drugs. No reason for him to kill her with his bare hands. Justice.

Posted by: HelloNewman53 | December 22, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

To docwhocuts:
If you noticed, the case is before a STATE Judge, under STATE law . . . Obama has nothing to do with it.

Please think before you post.

Posted by: liledjen4901 | December 22, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

First let me state that I completely agree that attempting in any way to blame this on the victim is completely despicable. That being said however let the defense try all these stunts. Under the law Huguely is entitled to the best defense possible. Far too many cases are thrown out on appeal based on the fact that the defense attorneys did not do everything in their power to defend their client. The more attempts like this that they make, the harder they make it to defend a case that Huguely was convicted due to his defense team. Convict him once, do it the right way and don't give him any chances to get off on appeal. So let them try all the stunts so that we can throw him in jail and throw away the key and no that nothing is getting him out.

Posted by: McCarthy911 | December 22, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

As unseemly as this request is I am glad that we live in a country where the idea of "innocent until proven guilty" still carries some weight. It looks like all parties acted responsibly here. The attorneys filed a petition under recognized court procedures. We can all try to read between the lines as to their intentions but it is not as if they stood on a soap box and shouted out wild accusations about the victim.

Posted by: Cossackathon | December 22, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

As unseemly as this request is I am glad that we live in a country where the idea of "innocent until proven guilty" still carries some weight. It looks like all parties acted responsibly here. The attorneys filed a petition under recognized court procedures. We can all try to read between the lines as to their intentions but it is not as if they stood on a soap box and shouted out wild accusations about the victim.

Posted by: Cossackathon | December 22, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

So Ms. Love waited until he was in her room to have an episode of cardiac arrhythmia? Did she do this to embarass and incriminate him with her untimely death?

Is it the position of his legal team that repeatedly pounding her head into the wall had no adverse effect?

Posted by: atkissonjim | December 22, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Okay, let's put some things to rest:

(1) Voluntary intoxication can negate the intent element of first degree murder in Virginia.

(2) If he was intoxicated, the defendant can still be convicted of second degree murder, for which he could spend most of the rest of his life behind bars. It's not death, but if you think that's not a bad punishment, then pop into a state prison sometime.

(3) There are mechanisms for punishing lawyers who make arguments so bad that they are unethical. Arguing that something else killed the victim may be a weak argument on the facts of this case, but it is not ethically suspect.

(4) The reality is that the judge paid the argument the attention that it deserved--the judge decided the issue in a five-minute hearing.

(5) From a legal standpoint, the motion was unexceptional. What people will opine on without knowing anything is simply mystifying.

Posted by: wm021 | December 22, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Defense attorneys are paid to keep their clients out of jail, or, when jail is unavoidable, to ensure their clients receive as minimal a sentence as is possible. While a profession such as this seems despicable to many, every defendant is owed the right to an assertive defense under our system of justice. There are enough checks and balances that seemingly implausible defenses will usually be shown to be invalid in our court system, which has been proven again and again to be imperfect. And, while it may indeed be imperfect, it required some pretty smart people to configure this justice system. For that, we should all be quite thankful.

To assert that the Obama administration is in any way culpable or responsible for any problems that exist in our present system of justice, is mindboggling.

I hope Yeardley's family heals, and I hope Yeardley rests in peace. Her justice lies with God, as does George's. Earthly justice is quite temporary.

Posted by: rmagritte | December 22, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Folks, criminal defense attorneys are required to provide a "vigorous defesne" for the clients. The only thing the attorneys are doing, is ensuring that the rights of the defendant are observed (due process) and that the are abiding by their canon of ethics.

After reading the NIH material on Adderall, one could use it as an argument as a mitigating factor.

To avoid a question for the appellate court, assuming their is a conviction, the judge should have considered using a "special master" to review the documents and redact that which is irrelevant and immaterial.

Let the court system work. It generally does.

Posted by: Computer_Forensics_Expert_Computer_Expert_Witness | December 22, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

I disagree with commenters here who think this is a stunt. It's no stunt, but a matter of criminal law that a defendant has the right to see all the evidence assembled against him or her as part of the discovery of evidence before the trial. If as the judge ruled there is nothing revelant in the autopsy report, then what is the harm in allowing defense lawyers to see it. Maybe this is a fishing expedition. Maybe it is an effort to lay the grounds for an expected appeal upon conviction. Maybe it is some effort to bring irrelevant matters into the trial. Maybe there are other reasons we don't yet know. But it is a grounding of our law that prosecutors do not hide or withhold evidence from the defendant which he believes can help him somehow in his defense. If we like this rulings, put yourself in his shoes and think how would you like it if the judges ruled the prosecutors can decline to show you evidence in the case.

Posted by: edwardallen54 | December 22, 2010 6:52 PM | Report abuse

To those who answered docwhocuts:
Thank you. Saved me the trouble.
Sheesh!

Posted by: rwattersjr1 | December 22, 2010 7:39 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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