Huguely was arrested that morning and admitted getting into an altercation with Love. He told police he shook her and wrestled with her and held her down as her nose bled. The statement was recorded and played for the jury.

Chapman advised jurors to watch it repeatedly while deliberating. So did Lawrence, claiming it shows a young man genuinely surprised to learn that Love is dead.

"There's sorrow and loss and sadness on this side of the courtroom, too," Lawrence said. He claims Huguely never intended to rob or kill Love, but things got out of hand.

"George bears responsibility for her death," Lawrence said, claiming that the assault combined with alcohol caused Love to suffocate on her own bloody pillow.

"It's just very different from the manner in which the commonwealth portrays it," he said, calling prosecutors "zealous" and suggesting that they had overreached in the charges brought against Huguely. He described Huguely and Love's world as a "20-something ghetto" with "lots of drama going around," where kicking in a door is not out of line.

The email threatening death was "hyperbole," Lawrence said, adding that most of us have "touched somebody [we] loved in a rude manner."

Chapman, as the prosecutor, had the final say.

Huguely "may not have known that he killed" Love, Chapman said, "but he sure as heck knew that he" hurt her.

tricia.bishop@baltsun.com

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