Court Grants Huguely Extended Appeal
Document says defendant's right to fair trial was violated
The Virginia Court of Appeals ruled last week to allow for a broadening of the appeal made in the trial of former Virginia lacrosse player George Huguely. A document released by the Court stated that the circuit court violated Huguely’s right to a fair trial by refusing to allow the defense to ask certain questions during jury selection which were relevant to whether jurors would remain impartial.
Huguely was convicted of second degree murder and grand larceny in February 2012 in the death of his ex-girlfriend Yeardley Love, also a former University student and varsity lacrosse player.
On January 22, 2013, attorneys for Huguely submitted a petition to the Virginia Court of Appeals asking for a new trial in the case, citing inconsistencies in juror selection and possibly biased jurors. Later, on April 23, the Virginia Court of Appeals agreed to hear the appeal by Huguely surrounding his conviction in the murder of Yeardley Love. That appeal was recently expanded.
The Court also found that the circuit court did not adequately instruct the jury about the meaning of “malice” under Virginia law, which could have made a difference between a manslaughter and murder conviction.
In addition to their objections regarding the jury pool, attorneys Paul Clement, Francis Lawrence, Rhonda Quagliana and Craig Cooley alleged that Huguley was denied his right to counsel when his attorney fell ill in the first few days of his trial. Additionally, they took issue with the fact that the prosecution was never notified of the Love family’s intent to sue Huguely for $35 million after the trial was over.