PROVO, Utah – The mistress of a Utah doctor accused of killing his wife testified Tuesday that she moved into his house nine days after the death and received a marriage proposal and a $7,000 diamond ring from the defendant within months.
The judge allowed prosecutors to aggressively question Gypsy Willis as a hostile witness after they argued she was trying to protect Martin MacNeill with less than truthful answers as he stands trial for murder in the death of his wife Michele MacNeill.
"Are you telling us you don't know anything more about Michele's death?" prosecutor Sam Pead asked.
"That is correct," Willis replied.
MacNeill is accused of hounding his wife to get a face-lift, then administering a lethal combination of drugs for her recovery and helping her into a tub of water in 2007.
In previous testimony, Willis said she traded text messages with the doctor 30 times that day.
Willis said she had been having a casual sexual relationship with MacNeill for 15 months before his wife died. The doctor set her up in a duplex, gave her a debit card for expenses, and helped pay for her schooling as a nursing student, she said.
She was previously asked about a family interview arranged by the doctor, who was looking for someone to care for his four youngest daughters.
"Was there any question you were going to be hired as a nanny?" prosecutor Chad Grunander asked.
Willis smiled before saying she understood that she needed the approval of MacNeill's grown children. Two have testified that they suspected she was a mistress and didn't want her in the house but were overruled by their father.
A drug expert testified last week that Michele MacNeill had four nervous system depressants in her blood that would have had a powerful knockout effect. A cause of death was never established.
Defense lawyers argue she had a heart attack and fell into the tub.
Willis was testifying under a deal with prosecutors that kept her out of jail on identity-theft charges. She was accused of taking the identity of one of MacNeill's adopted daughters to escape a debt-heavy credit history.