Expert: Yeardley Love could have survived

The prosecution is expected to rest today in George Huguely's murder trial in Charlottesville, Va.

On Tuesday, doctors gave graphic testimony of how his ex-girlfriend, fellow University of Virginia student Yeardley Love, died two years ago.

One medical expert revealed in the courtroom for the first time that following Yeardley Love's brutal beating -- had Huguely or anyone else -- called for help, Love might have survived.

In a tortured day of expert testimony, jurors learned that Love, a 22-year-old star lacrosse player, died slowly over the course of two hours, face down on her bed.

The prosecution claims on that May night in 2010, Huguely barged into Love's apartment in a drunken rampage, slamming her head repeatedly against the wall.

In court Tuesday, Huguely's defense faced an uphill climb. Through extensive show-and-tell, medical experts seemed to agree that Love's death was the result of her head whipping violently.

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One neuropathologist who examined her said her brain "twisted one way, then the other way" with "sudden acceleration and deceleration."

But under cross-examination by the defense, none of the witnesses could pinpoint whether that snapping of Love's head came from a punch, a fall, a shake or something else.

Wendy Murphy, a former prosecutor, told CBS News, "You can see the defense is trying to poke little holes in different places. The question is will it really matter very much?"

Huguely's attorneys argue that perhaps Love died in part due to a combination of prescription Adderall and a blood alcohol level of .14

But Tuesday, he experts agreed that the alcohol and the Adderall, taken for attention deficit disorder, were not at lethal levels.

"The defense strategy is multifaceted," Murphy said. "They don't have one single strong theory, they must create weak spots."

Still, the driving argument for the defense is that Huguely never intended to kill. They say this was a tragic accident -- that he does not deserve life in prison, but instead a lesser charge -- and a second chance.

To watch Whit Johnson's full report and discussion on the case, watch the video in the player above.
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