Posts Tagged ‘Hearing’

Final pretrial hearing held in Martin MacNeill murder case

Posted in The MacNeill Story on October 10th, 2013 by admin – 3 Comments

Al Hartmann | The Salt Lake Tribune Martin MacNeill, a doctor accused of murdering his wife appears in Judge Sam McVey’s Fourth District Court in Provo Wednesday October 10 for his preliminary hearing.

October 09, 2013 12:25 am  •  Paige Fieldsted – Daily Herald

PROVO — In the final hearing before Martin MacNeill stands trial for murder a number of motions were ruled in hopes of making the extensive trial run smoothly and without interruptions.

Fourth District Judge Derek Pullan ruled that prosecutors cannot elicit opinions about whether or not MacNeill grieved appropriately or not following the death of his wife, Michele. Prosecutors may call on witnesses to describe how MacNeill acted and what they saw and heard but the decision as to whether that was appropriate grief will be left to jury.

Judge Pullan also denied a motion to dismiss the obstruction of justice charge against MacNeill. Defense attorney Randy Spencer argued that the statute of limitations had run out and it wasn’t his clients fault that he was in federal prison in Texas and couldn’t be prosecuted before the statute ran out. Pullan denied the motion saying that MacNeill made the choice to be in Texas by committing a federal crime in a state where there is no federal prison.

Judge Pullan also ruled that several federal inmates and at least one former Utah County Jail inmate can testify at the trial. Spencer argued that the inmates are inherently unreliable and are therefore not competent to testify. Judge Pullan said that the defense could show unreliability through cross examination and that there was no legal reason as to why the inmates testimony should be excluded from trial. Pullan, however, did order that the Utah County Attorney’s Office disclose any offers or deals that have been given to or will be given to the inmates based on their cooperation at trial. read more »

Martin MacNeill’s girlfriend faces identity fraud charge

Posted in The MacNeill Story on February 17th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

Ravell Call, Deseret News: Gypsy Willis, former girlfriend of Martin MacNeill, listens to her attorney, John Easton

PROVO — The girlfriend of a man suspected of killing his wife was in court Tuesday on charges of working with him to steal his daughter’s identity.

Gypsy Willis, aka Giselle Jillian MacNeill, is currently serving a 21-month sentence for federal charges of aiding and abetting in aggravated identity theft and made her initial appearance for her district charges Tuesday. She was charged in December 2009 in 4th Provo’s District Court with one count of identity fraud, two counts of false and inconsistent material statements and one count of wrongful lien.

She set a waiver hearing March 1 where a preliminary hearing will be set or she will waive her preliminary hearing. Willis will be serving her last few weeks of her federal sentence in the Utah County jail.

The 34-year-old had been dating Martin MacNeill, a Pleasant Grove doctor and attorney, for several years before moving in with him and his family as a nanny just weeks after his wife’s suspicious death in April 2007.

Right after his wife, Michele, died, prosecutors say MacNeill and Willis began altering Willis’ identity, obtaining false military IDs, a Utah state ID card, and opening numerous bank accounts under the false name and identity.

They used the identity of his 16-year-old adopted daughter, Giselle — a daughter investigators say he had “flown to the Ukraine and left there to fend for herself” in the summer following his wife’s death.

MacNeill’s daughter, Alexis Somers, and Michele MacNeill’s sister, Linda Cluff, were both in the courtroom for Willis’ case.

“It was really hard,” Cluff said of being in the same room as Willis. “The fact that she just glares at you and then smiles — it’s just hard to see someone who destroyed our family’s lives.”

According to investigators MacNeill and Willis’ relationship had been “heating up” prior to Michele MacNeill’s death. Her two roommates told investigators Willis even talked to them about poisoning MacNeill’s wife or cutting the brake lines of her car.

“I am just scared she is going to get off,” Somers said of her father’s girlfriend, who she suspects is still in communication with her dad. “She is a threat. I am concerned for my safety, my family’s safety and my little sisters’ safety.”

Family members expect murder charges to be filed against MacNeill next month.

By Sara Lenz, Deseret News

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