Almost 45: Huguely likely facing middle-age prison release

So how long will UVA student-turned-killer George Huguely be in prison? According to a reporter's math, the young man jailed since the very morning that he violently awakened and then brutally beat ex-girlfriend Yeardley Love to death faces 22.1 years behind bars. That's based on the 26-year sentence recommended in February by a Charlottesville jury, tempered by Virginia's rule that prisoners must serve at least 85 percent of their time, and despite the right of Judge Edward Hogshire to lessen the jury's recommendation.

"Unless there's some new information that's compellingly mitigating," says Hook legal analyst David Heilberg, "the judge in all likelihood will uphold the jury's sentence."

That means the now 24-year-old Huguely– credited for time served since his early morning May 3, 2010 attack– is on track to remain behind bars until June 2032, about three months shy of his 45th birthday.

Even then, Huguely won't be free from state control. For the past dozen years, Virginia judges have been required to give all jailed felons an additional 6-to-36-month term that's suspended as long as the felon complies with all terms of the sentence and of post-release supervision.

So Huguely, whose own defense acknowledged his weakness for alcohol, might wind up seeing additional time if, for instance, he's ordered to stay off booze and then gets caught drinking.

Whatever his behavior, post-release supervision would probably happen in Virginia, according to Heilberg, because transferring supervision to another state– such as Huguely's home state of Maryland– would require approval from Charlottesville Circuit Court, the Department of Corrections, and from the receiving state.

As for what the public can expect to see at the August 30 sentencing, Heilberg says there will be a pre-sentencing report entered into the record, perhaps a sealed psychiatric evaluation, maybe a few words from a probation officer, and there might be some letters or testimony from friends and relatives asserting how the almost-college-graduated Huguely could still play a helpful role in society.

"The judge has heard it all before," says Heilberg.

The defense can't afford to make too many pronouncements about Huguely's penchant for peace. Otherwise, Heilberg says, the prosecutor might be tempted to haul out so-called "rebuttal witnesses."

In this case, a rebuttal might come from the Lexington police officer who could tell a tale of a berzerking drunk who was Tased before he was subdued. Or the court might hear from "the teammate," the fellow lacrosse player who, a civil lawsuit against the state asserts, Huguely allegedly attacked in a jealous rage. (According to that same civil suit, there are at least two other victims of Huguely's violent rage– a UVA men's tennis player whom Huguely saw walking near the UVA Grounds with Love– and a female who Huguely allegedly assaulted in high school.)

"They've got a real uphill battle," Heilberg says of the defense. "A jury verdict, which includes the sentencing, is thought to represent the community, and judges won't tamper with that without a really good reason."

–the image accompanying this story changed on Tuesday, August 28

Read more on: George Huguely


Too bad Yeardley won't have the same opportunity....

No good reason not to uphold the jury's sentence, which was too lenient, if anything.

Don't feel so bad, George. Tomorrow's 45 will be the new 35!

R.I.P.: Big Boss Man

I meant she won't have the opportunity to reach age 45.

Would like to see Sullivan actually impose new policy because of this that the trial is over and the verdict is upheld. WHEN is she going to take the bull by the horns???????????

UVA covers up violence against women. They talk the talk but don't walk the walk. Yeardley Love would certainly be alive today if UVA took violence against women seriously. Yes George H. is guilty of the deed but he should never have been allowed to get away with all his prior acts of violence. The history speaks volumes and UVA cannot hide behind the usual BS that they didn't know.

Since the Dept of Education and Justice have been investigating the lack of interest and prosecutions of sexual assault in the University of Montana things have started to change. Interestingly UM has a better record than UVA. UVA is known to have the worst record in this area. UM has actually expelled rapists in the past.

Well, he's got the felon's hairstyle. I wonder if he's gotten any tats since he's been locked away?



Too bad for Huguely that he doesn't have the medical expertise the Craig's List Killer was able to utilize to off himself up in Massachusetts.

He's going to jail, it was a terrible and tragic accident, he will regret this for the rest of his life, and he will probably never touch alcohol again when he's released from prison. Blaming people with "woulda, coulda, shouldas" won't solve anything. Nor is suing the the entire university.

@laxworld - this is what I call the UVA chant. "We believe you. It was an accident. He will never do this again. He has learned from his errors" BLA BLA BLA lets call it a day and cover it up.

"He's going to jail, it was a terrible and tragic accident, he will regret this for the rest of his life, and he will probably never touch alcohol again when he's released from prison."
What a load of UVA BS. You really know how to shovel it.

"Blaming people with "woulda, coulda, shouldas" won't solve anything. Nor is suing the the entire university." The entire administration should have been fired for the total lack of concern. Your commentary is so UVA it makes me puke!

I BLAME UVA FOR YEARDLEY LOVE'S DEATH!!!!!!!! Without ANY hesitation.

This was not George's first transgression. If UVA had punished and helped him for all the prior acts of aggression this "tragedy" would have never happened. I hope the lawsuit you seem to fear so much kicks your dumb asses until you change your crappy policy. Perhaps if UVA pays for its sins it might then decide to change its policy towards women.

@moi - I didn't go to UVA and have no personal affiliation. Those are just my opinions. Given your train of thought, I'm guessing that you believe that the University of Colorado should claim responsibilty for not intervening with the Batman shooter.

@laxworld - I apologize if you are not related to UVA but your post sounded something straight out of their manual.

"Given your train of thought, I'm guessing that you believe that the University of Colorado should claim responsibilty for not intervening with the Batman shooter."

I am not privy to the details but from what I have read the Batman shooter had not shown prior signs of "violence" as did George H (choking a girl is no light matter). He made threats and they were reported to the Police. UC effectively threw him out. Do you see a comparison here? UVA did zip, nothing!

Please don't cal it an accident! Bursting into someone's home and attacking them whilethey are in bed is totally DELIBERATE!
Now it was a "terrible,tragic accident" some years back when a UVa student driving after drinking struck and killed a pedestrian on 29 North because she failed to see the victim in the darkness.

@moi - After some thought upon reading the responses, I agree that Huguely did go to Love's apartment with the intention of intimidating her. Afterall, he was drunk and drink makes one think of stupid ideas that sound brilliant in the heights of inebriation. However, do I think he had any premeditated "plan," if you like, of killing her? No.

@HollowBoy - Based on the case evidence, it is clear that the two had BOTH been drinking and had a history of having a stormy relationship. While Yeardley's death was tragic and horrid, I'm sick and tired of the media, especially up here in Baltimore, painting her as a saint. She was your typical hot lax girl and he was the stereotypical aristo lax boy. Ken and Barbie if you will. Maybe it's time that preppies realize that life is not a Bret Easton Ellis

Maybe she had had a few drinks earlier.but she had gone home and gone to bed. And she was of legal age to drink. There is no comparison.
""typical hot lax girl",looks like sexism is still alive and well. "She asked for it"-thats what I am hearing here.Its always the woman's fault if she is the victim.
Her personal character is irrelevant. Even if she had been a crack-addicted prostitute, she did not deserve to be murdered. Her, or any other woman.
Our patriarchal society still does not take violence against women seriously whether it be domestic violence(like in this case) , rape, sexual harassment,oppression of lesbians,and so on.
"we're still marching in the streets ,with little victories,and big defeats"- Joan Baez.
She was referring to the peace movement,but could well apply to those of use who have done Take Back the Night many times as well.

Meh, who cares? He's going to jail. End of story.

The world is broken and needs to be mended. George has reportedly done horrible things, but 26 years is a long time. Love and forgiveness. It's the only thing that has any chance of saving the human race.

not to rehash the past years, but Yeardley is gone...I dont know what to say to laxworld, but i think it is so sad you can say "opps it was an accident". Accidents are when you spill a drink on someone or you bump into someone or you even get into a car accident with them...An accident is not when you send hateful emails about wanting to kill someone and then going to a young girl's house and you bash in a door and you continually beat her head against the wall while she begs you to stop saying "no stop, please stop" until blood pours from her eyes, nose and mouth. That is not an accident. As I sit here tonight, awaiting the words from Judge Hogshire, all i know for sure is that the most one can hope for is that the judge upholds the jury recommendation. HE should have received more than that in my opinion, but he did not. I am an older person and I know that there is alot of living to be done after the age of 40 or 45, so please do not pity George or his family. They can visit him daily. He can live life whether it be behind bars or not. I know for many of you 40 yrs old seems ancient. it is not. He can still have a family, a child etc. He can continue to communicate with his parents sibling his friends. I know prison is not a great place, but it is a far cry better than a plot of ground six feel below. God bless Mrs Love and Lexie this evening and every day and may Yeardley Love bless us because she is the one in heaven.

He will emerge from prison as one of the "Undead", a middle aged man whose parents will likely be gone and whose contemporaries and siblings (if any) will have moved on and forgotten him. He will be adrift, will have no career, and will most likely have other scrapes with the law. His life after prison will, as is common in such cases, be a sort of purgatory from which there will be no escape save an early death from self abuse...The life he might have had will never be....

@AngelEyes: So? He did it to himself. Yeardley Love was deprived of any kind of life by Huguely.

It's hard not to pity him .... but I cannot feel sorry for him. And it is hard to believe that nothing will change except the number of place settings at the Love holiday table. I am dismayed that now that the trial is over, this tragedy will be buried int he history books and nothing else will be done. Where are the Women's Groups? The new semester at UVA is starting --- by this time next week some woman will have been raped and some campus cop will be telling her it was her fault....


@Marylandprivateschooler - You've basically described the majority of first string lacrosse players from Landon to Gilman, St. Paul's to St. Alban's, Loyola to Gonzaga, and so on. While I agree that the parents are ultimately to blame for any over-coddling, indulging, and so on, the athletic departments at these private schools are a large component as well. The star attackman on the varsity lacrosse team at my alma mater in Baltimore was a total womanizer, drunkard, and bully. The only time he was disciplined was when it was discovered that he had filmed himself and his then girlfriend having sex without her knowledge and then had the audacity to show the film to the rest of the team.

This stunt reached the ears of the girl's parents and the school's faculty and staff which resulted in his expulsion and the school forfeiting the rest of the season. His little film caused those on his team to have to lose their athletic scholarships too. So, guess what happened? A number of the teammates transferred to different private schools to keep their scholarships or were held back another year in the hopes of regaining them. Lacrosse is an industry and the players are bred like racehorses.

They come out of that culture believing they're untouchable on all levels. Here we see that Huguely is a product of that culture and finally the dark side of lacrosse has been exposed.