that their affair was “casual,” despite the fact that prosecutors allege she
and the doctor exchanged 15 text messages on the day his wife was found
lifeless in a bathtub.
Gypsy Willis said she met Dr. Martin MacNeill, a married father of eight
children, online around November 2005, however their relationship did
not turn sexual until January 2006, she said.
“We would see each other about a couple times a month. There were
months when we didn’t see each other. It was a very casual thing,” said
Willis, who wore a tight blazer over a low-cut camisole while on the stand
in the Provo, Utah, courtroom.
Willis testified that MacNeill, 57, helped her financially during nursing
school around February 2007.
Prosecutors allege MacNeill drugged and drowned his wife, Michele Mac-
Neill, 50, on April 11, 2007, so he could pursue a relationship with Willis.
“This was a very informal, discreet thing,” Willis said of her relationship
with MacNeill. “I think he was trying to keep it quiet.”
Prosecutors allege the relationship moved full-speed ahead and that
phone records indicated the couple exchanged text messages during
Michele MacNeill’s funeral, which they both attended.
Willis’ testimony lasted for about an hour before the judge broke for the
weekend. She will return to the stand when the trial resumes on Tues-
Judge Derek Pullan said this morning that Ada MacNeill, who was 6
years old when she found her mother unconscious in a bathtub, will
be allowed to testify at her father’s trial, but with some caveats.
Ada, who is now 12, may have some memories that are “planted or dis-
torted,” Pullan said.
Since her mother’s death, Ada has been living with her older sister,
Alexis Somers, who testified on Thursday that she was asked by investi-
gators to follow up on some details with her Ada.
“There is clear and convincing evidence that some of Ada’s memories
were planted or distorted by Alexis’ repeated interviews,” Pullan said.
While no new testimony will be allowed, jurors will be shown a record-
ing of Ada’s interview with the Children’s Justice Center and then she
will take the stand to be cross-examined by her father’s defense team.
“There has been a significant lapse of time between then and now,”
Pullan said. “The degree of her recollection is not stellar.”
It was not immediately known when Ada MacNeill would take the stand.
On Thursday, her two older sisters, Alexis Somers and Rachel MacNeill,
provided emotional testimony about their father’s perceived strange
behavior after their mother died.
The day his wife died, Dr. Martin MacNeill insisted on telling Rachel
MacNeill how her mother ended up in a bathtub unconscious, even
though she said she asked him to not tell her the details.
Rachel MacNeill wiped away tears, and her voice quivered at times, as
she testified Thursday at her father’s murder trial in Provo, Utah.
“He said that she must have fallen, hit her head,” Rachel MacNeill said.
“He kept repeating that the autopsy needed to be done. I didn’t want to
see any of this. My mother just died, and even showing me and talking
about [the] autopsy. … It was horrible. I didn’t want to know and I was
concerned about my family. I didn’t want to hear that.”
MacNeill kept his head down for part of his daughter’s testimony as she
described her close relationship with him while growing up, even call-
ing him her “best friend.”
Somers testified that she believed her father was guilty of drugging and
drowning her mother as she recovered from plastic surgery. “Ever since
the day my mom died, I was concerned that my father killed her. I’ve
been fighting to get justice for this case ever since then,” Somers testi-