University of Virginia lacrosse playeer George Huguely faces 26 years in prison for killing fellow lacrosse playeer Yeardley Love in 2010. The Baltimore Sun says the case has had an impact on college campuses, in new laws and policies. Her death put a spotlight on excessive drinking and dating violence, subjects not always addressed in college settings. It prompted Virginia to make it easier to get protective orders against threatening persons. It led to a stricter U.Va. policy requiring students to report arrests — such as Huguely’s, for public intoxication and resisting arrest.
Advocates tell the Sun that Love has put a face on the perils of failing to heed warning signs of escalating and alcohol-fueled violence, particularly for young people, who tend not to think they could be victims. The story is filled with “salient lessons with regard to alcohol use, with regard to dating violence, with regard to rage and the law of unintended consequences,” said Stephen Wallace of the Center for Adolescent Research and Education at Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania. Wallace, senior adviser for policy, research and education at Students Against Destructive Decisions, or SADD, said “tragic tales” rather than statistics can get young people to take advantage of prevention efforts like the ones his group advocates.