Huguely Trial Day 5: Huguely’s video interrogation played in courtroom

Posted at 4:44 PM, Feb 10, 2012
and last updated 2012-02-13 13:12:06-05

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WTVR) – Prosecutors continued to lay out evidence against George Huguley as his murder trial moved into its fifth day Friday. Today marked the third day of testimony.

Huguely, 24, faces six charges, including first-degree murder, in connection with the death of Yeardley Love, his ex-girlfriend. Both Huguely and Love played lacrosse at the University of Virginia. [Read more about the case] Huguely has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

CBS 6 News’ Catie Beck said prosecutors first called Dr. Renu Virmani, a cardiac pathologist, to the witness stand Friday morning.

Virmani reviewed more than a dozen slides to analyze the health of Love’s heart prior to and after her death.  She consulted with the medical examiner during the autopsy and concluded that “there were minor changes in heart that could not explain her death.”

The prosecutor hopes to establish that Love did not die of a heart related condition, one exacerbated by use of Adderall and alcohol. Love’s blood-alcohol content level was .16 when she was found, said a witness on Tuesday.

That level would be two times higher than the legal drunk driving level, and that was after Love allegedly stopped drinking around 10 p.m., according to testimony from her roommate.

Virmani said she did find one section near the base of Love’s heart that showed minor signs of damage. She said there was hemorrhaging around one portion of the heart.

However, she said it may have been caused by the CPR given in an attempt to revive Love and that she thinks the damage was done after Love had died.

Virmani said that had the injury to the heart occurred while she was alive, there would have been white blood cells present almost immediately, but in her case there were only red cells.

Love had no pre-existing condition of the heart that caused her death, according to Virmani.

Hugely’s interrogation tape with police, just hours after Love’s death, was played in court. The tape shows Huguely being questioned, without knowing at first that Love has died.

According to a tweet sent from the Daily Progress newspaper, Huguely had consumed about 20 alcoholic drinks the day Love died; a mix of wine, beer and liquor said ABC journalist Gail Pennybacker.

Another journalist, Jessica Jaglois, tweeted that Huguely said he was “more drunk than I’ve ever been.”

Huguely was questioned by Lt. Reeves, and he told him, on the tape that was played, “I didn’t strangle her but I may have grabbed her neck.”

ABC reporter Cleopatra Andreadis tweeted that Huguely held his head in his hands and cried in court as he listened to the tape from two years ago.

Andreadis tweeted that Huguely was screaming and crying to the investigators on tape once he was told Love was dead.

“I refuse to believe she is dead shes not dead she cant be dead.”

For trial updates throughout the day, following @CBS6Huguely on Twitter. [Click here]

During testimony on Thursday, KW Blackwell, who was the first to arrive at Love’s apartment on May 3, 2010.  Officer Blackwell told the court he was called to Love’s residence for a reported alcohol overdose.

He recalled finding Love on her back and unresponsive. He testified to beginning CPR efforts immediately on Love and noted that Love had significant visible injuries to her head and neck. Specifically he mentioned that her right eye was swollen shut, she had an abrasion beneath her chin and had dried blood near her nose and mouth. [Click to read more about Thursday’s testimony]

Thursday afternoon several of Love and Huguely’s peers testified, many coming back to Charlottesvile for the trial. Sharon Aladj testified to sexual relations with Huguely and Mike Burns testified to sexual relations with Love, although the intimacy never developed into a relationship for either.

Witnesses have testified that both Huguely and Love reacted negatively to the other person seeing anyone else, although the relationship was said to be on and off again by many friends.

On Thursday Burns recounted an episode where Huguely had Love in a chokehold, while another witness testified that Love had hit Huguely; painting a picture of a tumultous relationship.