George Huguely has been convicted of murdering Yeardley Love, every media outlet on the planet reports. After only a day’s deliberation, the jury convicted the former UVA student of second-degree murder for his role in the 2010 death of his girlfriend and fellow UVA lacrosse player. It became clear over the course of the two-week trial that a conviction was likely, but as unflattering portraits of both the accused and the victim emerged, with UVA’s culture of functional student alcoholism front and center, the speculation boiled down to whether Huguely would be convicted of first-degree murder, or second-degree murder. Huguely’s legal team presented alternate theories about the cause of Love’s death—without seriously challenging the notion that Huguely beat her terribly—including that she was smothered by passing out on a pillow soaked in her own blood and that she fatally combined alcohol and her ADD medication, presumably to create doubt in the minds of jurors that Huguely’s actions were the sole cause of Love’s death. The case captured the attention of national media, with dozens of journalists and their crews camping out at the courthouse for the trial.
Next up: Sentencing. Huguely is facing the possibility of life in prison.
10:50 PM Update: He’s been sentenced to 26 years in prison.