Yeardley Love’s Mother Sues Lacrosse Coaches Over Daughter’s Death
(CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.) -- The mother of slain University of Virgnia lacrosse star Yeardley Love is suing the coaches of the men's lacrosse team for ignoring George Huguely's assaults on other students, including another female student.
The $30 million wrongful death suit implies that the coaches overlooked Huguely's menacing behavior because he was a star on their nationally ranked lacrosse team.
The suit also names UVA, the university's athletic director and the state of Virginia as defendants.
Huguely, 25, killed Love, 22, in a drunken rage in May 2010 just weeks before she was to graduate. Both Huguely and Love were star lacrosse players on the university's elite teams.
Huguely was found guilty of second-degree murder and grand larceny. He has not yet been sentenced.
The suit was filed in the Circuit Court for the County of Louisa in Virginia on Tuesday under the name of Love's mother Sharon Love, listed as the administrator of her daughter's estate.
Love asks for $29,450,000 in compensatory damages, plus interest. She filed a similar lawsuit last week against Huguely for $30 million.
The defendants named include men's lacrosse head coach Dom Starsia, associate head coach Marc Van Arsdale and UVA director of athletics Craig Littlepage.
"It was well known to the players and coaches on the UVA men's and women's lacrosse teams that Huguely's alcohol abuse and erratic, aggressive behavior was increasingly getting out of control, especially his obsession with Love and his aggressiveness and threats to Love," the lawsuit states.
The coaches and director are charged with three counts of negligence and gross negligence for not disciplining Huguely after several attacks on fellow students.
The suit implies that Huguely received preferential treatment for being a star athlete when it points out that in May 2009, another varsity lacrosse player "who sparingly played" was arrested for a DUI and was suspended from the team. Huguely was not suspended for his multiple similar offenses. The suit lists three run-ins with the law Huguely was involved in before attacking Love.
The state vows it will "vigorously defend" the case.
"We are aware that suit has been filed, but, to date, the plaintiff has not sought to have it served on the commonwealth defendants," Brian J. Gottstein, director of communication for the Office of the Attorney General of Virginia, told ABC News in an email.
In February, the jury recommended 25 years in prison for the second-degree murder conviction and one year for a grand larceny conviction. The judge can either confirm or lessen the sentence, but he cannot increase it. Huguely's sentencing date has been set for Aug. 30.
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