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Trial begins in trial for death of UVA lacrosse player Yeardley Love

Nearly 12 years after University of Virginia lacrosse player Yeardley Love was found dead in her off-campus apartment, the man who was convicted of second-degree murder in her murder is being arraigned in court for a civil lawsuit in a wrongful death lawsuit filed by Yeardley’s mother.

Jury selection is expected Monday in Charlottesville Circuit Court in a trial that will seek to hold George Huguely responsible for Love’s death. The lawsuit seeks $29.5 million in compensatory damages and $1 million in punitive damages.

Both Love and Huguely were seniors who were weeks away from graduating. They were known for their play on the UVA’s nationally ranked men’s and women’s lacrosse teams, but they were also known for their volatile relationship.

Prosecutors say Huguely punched a hole in Love’s bedroom door, then beat her after a day of golf and drinking, furious that she had an affair with a North Carolina lacrosse player .

A medical examiner has concluded that 22-year-old Love died of blunt force trauma to the head, but experts for defense and prosecution have issued differing medical opinions on the life-threatening consequences of her injuries.

The civil trial is expected to include many of the same witnesses, although many of them are expected to testify in videotaped depositions rather than in person.

Huguely’s attorney, Matthew Green, said the defense would agree that Huguely’s assault and battery caused Love’s death and that his family was entitled to compensatory damages in an amount to be determined by the jury. But he said the defense does not believe punitive damages are appropriate.

Green said Huguely should testify. He said Huguely would be brought to court from jail on the day he was due to testify, but not the other days of the trial.

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