PROVO, Utah (ABC 4 News) – Pleasant Grove doctor, Martin MacNeill, made his first court appearance Monday on charges for allegedly killing his wife, Michele. His children tell ABC 4 they’re happy their mother is finally getting justice.
A man once known as a prominent Utah County doctor, appeared in Provo courtroom Monday shackled in chains, and wearing a yellow jail jumpsuit.
“The world now knows that my father has committed murder,” said Rachel MacNeill, suspect’s daughter.
Carrying photos of their mother, MacNeill’s daughters and other family said they watched Monday’s proceedings with both a sense of anguish and yet relief.
“Today is the first time there’s some sort of justice for our mother,” said Alexis Somers, suspect’s daughter.
Back in 2007, Michele MacNeill was found unconscious in her bathtub. An initial autopsy report said she died of natural causes. But the family never bought it. Prosecutors allege she had been given a lethal combination of drugs.
“I believed from the beginning that he murdered my sister,” said Linda Cluff, victim’s sister.
MacNeill’s attorney claims his client is innocent.
“He’s adamantly professed his innocence from the beginning and continues to do so. I’m confident when all the evidence is heard that the jury will conclude he’s not guilty,” said Randy Spencer, MacNeill’s defense attorney.
Spencer said prosecutors don't have any new evidence. However, a 57-page arrest warrant filed in 4th District Court states Martin MacNeill lied about having cancer himself and forced his wife to get a facelift and take prescription drugs before her death.
MacNeill’s daughters tell ABC 4 they’re prepared to fight that claim in court, and they want the world to know their father cut their mother’s life short.
“She’s a beautiful woman on the inside and out,” said Somers.
“This is our mother she means something, she means so much to so many people and this is who he took away from everyone, this is our mother,” said MacNeill.
MacNeill’s children believe they’re mother isn’t the only victim. They said their father bragged to an ex-girlfriend that “he was present at multiple deaths” at the Utah State Developmental Center in American Fork, and he said “he killed them.”
The daughters are asking anyone who had any contact with their father, and believe he could’ve harmed someone they know, to contact them on their website. To find their website just click on the link labeled “Martin MacNeill website” embedded in this story.
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