Huguely Murder Trial in Recess - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Huguely Murder Trial in Recess

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Murder suspect George Huguely will walk into Charlottesville Circuit Court Wednesday morning with an uncertain future.   His fate is in the hands of 12 jurors who will begin deliberations at 9:00 a.m.

Huguely is facing six felony charges in connection with the death of Yeardley Love in May of 2010. 

Saturday jurors were in court for 10 hours.  After closing arguments they decided as a group to start deliberating three days later.   The trial is in recess until Wednesday, but you may wonder why it is on hold for so long.  

There is a delay in deliberations for the trial because court was closed on Monday due to a federal holiday and Tuesday because it was grand jury day.    That is when the grand jury decides on bills of indictment and if a case will go to trial.

Jurors have been away from the Huguely case since late Saturday night. NBC29 legal analyst Lloyd Snook says it is anyone's guess as to how the recess will affect juror's decisions on the six felony charges.

Snook stated, "I've had some cases where we argued the case Friday afternoon and came back Monday morning for deliberations.  I've talked to jurors afterwards and it seems like they kind of had whatever ideas they had in mind at the end of business before the break, kind of solidify a bit, and it kind of took a while in deliberations to break those - to break the ice - so to speak."

Huguely is facing six felony charges including first-degree murder, felony murder in the commission or attempted commission of a robbery, robbery, burglary, statutory burglary and grand larceny. 

The jury can pick from a series of charges in regards to the first-degree murder charge:

  • Guilty of first-degree murder - premeditated, intentional killing.
  • Guilty of second-degree murder - murder with malice that is not premeditated.
  • Guilty of voluntary manslaughter - intentional killing in the heat of passion.
  • Guilty of involuntary manslaughter - unlawful and unintentional killing .
  • Not guilty. 

Under sentencing guidelines, Huguely could face the following sentences:

  • First-degree murder:  whether as premeditated or as felony murder, ranges from 20 years to life.
  • Second-degree murder: ranges from 5 to 40 years.
  • Manslaughter - voluntary or involuntary: ranges from 0 to 10 years.
  • Burglary:  He is charged with two counts of burglary, but he only went in once, so although the jury could find him guilty under both indictments, the judge would actually sentence him under only one of the following two counts:
    • Statutory burglary ranges from 0 to 20 years.
    • Burglary (not to be confused with statutory burglary) ranges from 5 to 20 years.
  • Grand larceny ranges from 0 to 20 years.
  • Robbery ranges from 5 years to life.

Court resumes Wednesday morning at 9:00 a.m., all 14 jurors will show up but two will be cut right off the top. If any guilty verdicts come down, the jury will then consider sentencing and give Judge Edward Hogshire a recommendation. The judge will have the final say on Huguely's fate. 

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