Martin MacNeill asking for specifics in murder case

November 15, 2012 12:22 am  •  Paige Fieldsted – Daily Herald

PROVO — Martin MacNeill, a former Pleasant Grove doctor accused of killing his wife in 2007, is seeking more information on the charges he is facing.

In a motion filed by defense attorney Randall Spencer this month, MacNeill is asking the court to require prosecutors to provide a document called a bill of particulars. Specifically, the defense is asking for “a more specific statement of the state’s theory as to the precise time defendant allegedly administered drugs to the decedent, how defendant allegedly administered drugs to the decedent, the precise time of death and the precise cause of death — was it a heart arrhythmia, drowning, potassium poisoning or something else?” Spencer wrote in his motion.

Last month, after a days-long preliminary hearing, a judge ruled there was enough evidence for MacNeill to stand trial on murder and obstruction of justice charges.

Spencer’s motion states that several expert witnesses called by prosecutors during the preliminary hearing were unable to determine the exact cause of Michelle MacNeill’s death. Spencer wrote that without the requested documentation, MacNeill will have to speculate about what he’s accused of doing that caused his wife’s death.

The defense also is asking the prosecution to provide information on what MacNeill did to obstruct justice.

In a response to Spencer’s motion, prosecuting attorney Chad Grunander said all the information the defense is asking for was provided in the charging documents filed on Aug. 12 and during the October preliminary hearing. In his motion, Grunander stated “the state cannot be required to tell a defendant what evidence will be presented to prove the charges against him in the form of a bill of particulars.”

Grunander wrote that he has offered to meet with the defense in person and allow them to review the state’s case file and evidence to assist in the preparation of their defense.

Fourth District Judge Samuel McVey will review both motions and make a ruling before trial, which is scheduled to begin in March.

MacNeill has a scheduling conference in court Nov. 26.


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