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Jury awards $15M in damages in UVA lacrosse player’s killing

Published: May. 2, 2022 at 11:49 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - A former University of Virginia lacrosse player who fatally beat his girlfriend in 2010 has been ordered by a jury to pay $15 million in a wrongful death lawsuit.

Monday evening, the jury awarded $15 million in compensatory damages to Sharon and Lexie Love, Yeardley Love’s mother and sister. It also found George Huguely responsible for punitive damages, but decided not to award any.

The plaintiffs had originally asked for $29.5 million in compensatory damages and $1 million in punitive damages. Love’s lawyers say they are pleased with the verdict.

“Justice sometimes takes time, but justice was done today,” Love’s attorney Paul Bekman said.

Although the jury did not award punitive damages, it still found Huguely responsible for love’s death.

“Fifteen million dollars is a very fair verdict. It is not as important as the final finding that there was wanton or willful misconduct and conscious disregard for the rights of Yeardley Love. That is extremely important to the family. It’s extremely important to us,” Bekman said.

Huguely’s lawyer agrees with the compensatory damages awarded. The money will be collected through assets and future earnings.

“The death of Yeardley Love and criminal trial of George Huguely has resulted in twelve years of litigation that has been very hard on everybody. This will be the end of that litigation,” Huguely’s lawyer Matthew Green said.

Both parties have said they will not be pursuing any further legal action.

“I think that what they [the jury] said in their special finding is that they’re sending a message out to everyone that you cannot get drunk or intoxicated and do whatever you want. There are consequences to pay if that happens,” Bekman said.

This verdict came down on on May 2, exactly one day before the 12 year anniversary of Yeardley Love’s death.

Huguely was found guilty of second degree murder after admitting to kicking down her door and drunkenly assaulting her. He is about halfway through serving 23 years behind bars.

The Love family created the One Love Foundation in Yeardley’s honor, which works to educate teenagers about the signs of abusive or unhealthy relationships.

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