Charlottesville Breaking News

Analyst says: Huguely still heading for a conviction

Despite the previous day's revelation that after getting brutally beaten Yeardley Love survived for two hours, longtime Hook legal analyst David Heilberg indicates that he stands by his prognostication that a first-degree murder conviction remains a possibility.

"Basically, she was helpless during the short time she was alive," says Heilberg, noting the defendant's "cold indifference" to Love's welfare by absconding with her computer and failing to call emergency responders after pummeling her.

Prosecutor Dave Chapman noted during his opening argument that the injured Love was in a many-windowed apartment, something that resonates with Heilberg.

"He talked about the small apartment with lots of windows, so if she had any ability to move, she'd have sought help," says Heilberg. "She wouldn't have to go far to open a window or cry out."

The defense, however, has indicated that it plans to introduce a variety of alternate scenarios that might have killed Love. These include a drug/alcohol-induced heart arrhythmia, bleeding from strenuous CPR efforts, and something akin to crib death called "positional asphyxiation."

Lauding the legal teams on both sides, Heilberg compliments the prosecutor, whose opening argum...

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Hook turns 10: A decade of digging

The tale of the Hook's sudden founding ten years ago has oft been told, so I won't rehash it here. What I will repeat are a few exciting highlights. My personal favorite is the fact that the first issue rolled off the presses and hit the newsstands on February 7, 2002, the same day my youngest child was born.

Up next is the fact that I get to work with the Fab Three: Lisa Provence, Courteney Stuart, and Dave McNair. (They were nice enough to let me in this Fab Four photo with them.) They're the main reason the Hook has won 120 awards from the Virginia Press Association. And they don't just create good-for-you "broccoli" journalism. The Hook reporters are fabulously witty wordsmiths whose creativity matches their pursuit of stories, and they're probably the only print reporters in Charlottesville with name recognition.


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Crib death? Defense insists Huguely merely 'contributed'

After getting taunted as a less-talented sex partner than a rival lacrosse player, George W. Huguely V sent on-again/off-again girlfriend Yeardley Love an email that he may live to regret: "I should have killed you."

However, the first airing of that potentially damaging message in Huguely's first-degree murder trial did little to deter the defense theory, which began unfolding Wednesday after nearly two years of speculation. Defense lawyer Francis McQ. Lawrence says his client's actions amount to nothing worse than involuntary manslaughter.

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Day 3: photos of Huguely trial

Photographs from outside the Charlottesville Circuit Court on the morning of Wednesday, February 8. The trial entered its third day with opening arguments from the defense and the prosecution.

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ABC superteen: How an underage agent took down Kroger

For many restaurants and bars, the prospect of a visit by undercover ABC agents is a constant fear. A single alcohol violation could trigger temporary loss of a liquor license with devastating financial implications for a small business; multiple violations can, quite literally, spell the end of a livelihood. But what happens when the country's biggest grocery store chain is targeted by ABC?

On January 3, shoppers at the Barracks Road Kroger found out. Anyone eager for a bottle of vino or a six-pack of suds arrived to find the store's extensive alcohol offerings unavailable. Black-plastic-covered plywood surrounded the massive wine department; the beer shelves were similarly blocked. Signs posted by management apologized to customers and suggested they make alcohol purchases at Kroger's two other Charlottesville locations but offered no explanation for the three-day dry spell. It involved a superteen.

"The date of the violation was November 2; the charge was selling to underage," reveals Virginia ABC spokesperson Rebecca Gettings, who says the store's infraction was selling a single 24-ounce can of Bud Light to an 18-year-old.

Unfortunately for Kroger, America's largest supermarket chain, this particular 18-year-old wasn't the average buzz-seeking teen. It was an underage operative, a being so powerful he or she is able to turn a single $3 purchase into thousands of dollars in fines and lost sales in a single bound.

According to another ABC spok...

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