Martin MacNeill Has Led An Interesting Life!

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Where to begin the story of Martin MacNeill? When he was in the military at age seventeen and successfully  faked schizophrenia to get a medical discharge with veterans benefits? According to the Utah County investigator Jeff Robinson, MacNeill’s life was like the movie Catch Me If You Can on steroids.  MacNeill spent a lifetime acting his way through the world and changing his reality to suit the situation.

Perhaps I will start with when he met his wife, Michele. Michele’s mother immediately thought something was off with him. In fact, her bishop called her to tell her to beg her daughter not to date him, but he could not tell her why. Her sister did not like him and thought he was arrogant. But Michele was drawn to him and he threatened to kill himself if she didn’t marry him so they eloped. MacNeill would threaten suicide many times during his marriage. Soon after her mother found out she was married, Martin made the news for forging $35,000 worth of checks to buy clothes and diamonds and miscellaneous crap just to see if he could. He watched a 60 minutes episode about check forgery and decided he could do a better job. The forgery happened just before he met Michele so her mother went looking for his criminal record. It was then she found out about the schizophrenia. She told her other daughters that she feared Martin would kill her one day. Four months after they married, Martin went to prison for six months for the forgery conviction.

In 1987 Martin got his medical degree and in 1980 his law degree. There are conflicting reports about the legitimacy of these degrees. Particularly his medical degree that was completed primarily in Guadalajara, Mexico. Martin has never gotten anything in his life the straight and narrow way it seems. According to documents obtained by the Utah County Attorney’s Office, Martin falsified transcripts with inflated grades and lied on applications to get into two different medical schools and to BYU Law School. He was terminated from his physicans job in 1999 for undisclosed reasons from his job amid accusations or rape, misdiagnosis and unprofessional conduct.

In 2000, Michele found Martin looking at porn, he threatened to kill Michele and himself with a butcher knife. Cops were called and he spent a night in a mental hospital. A few years later said he didn’t love Michele anymore and didn’t want the adopted kids anymore. Michele was further sure they were heading for divorce when they moved into the house she died in about a year before her death.

She agreed to the facelift that he begged her to get in an effort to save her marriage. She was already sure that he was sleeping with  Gypsy Jyllian Williams.  After her death many women came forward claiming that too had affairs with Martin, and some even alleged rape. Michele’s  daughter Alexis stayed by her mother’s bed taking care of her after surgery. She left her only once at her father’s insistence she get some sleep. When she woke up, her mother was out of it and listless. Martin admitted he may have over medicated her. She didn’t leave her bedside again until she was up and about back to her routine.  Michele was dead within hours. Alexis was sure her father was responsible.

Prior to Michele’s death, Martin told neighbors and church members that he was dying of a rare form of foot cancer and that he had MS. This was in fact untrue. It seems that it was all and elaborate set up to explain why he could not pull Michele from the bathtub where he would later drug and drown her.

The blood drawn at the hospital indicated that the medications found in Michele’s body were taken within 1-2 hours of her death. Alexis believes he must have crushed them into her food. Martin asked his son Damien and his girlfriend to collect all of Michele’s pills  and flush them right after she died because they would just be an upsetting reminder. Damian says the reason his dad asked him to flush the pills was to keep the face lift a secret from the neighbors and because his dad was afraid he might use them to overdose.  Damian himself committed suicide by pills years later.

Martin spoke at Michele’s funeral giving a rambling speech that barely mentioned Michele at all. He also had his daughters call Michele’s brothers who were in from out-of-town and told them not to come. Her family had a another ceremony the next day.

Three days after the funeral, Martin took his daughter Rachel to a temple to pray for a nanny. As they left the Temple, Lo and Behold! There was Jyllian on the church steps. The two pretended not to know each other. The Lord had provided a nanny. Alexis pointed out that this God-given nanny was actually Martin’s mistress. This cause Martin to excommunicate Alexis from the family and demand that none of the siblings ever speak to her again.

After Michele’s death, the family would find out that Martin was having sexual encounters with several other women. One of them said that Martin confessed to killing his own brother and making it look like a suicide. She said he also told her when he was young he tried to kill his mother. The judge recently ruled that this testimony will not be allowed at trial. She also said he offered to kill her husband to free her from an abusive relationship. She suspected Martin was a serial killer.

Nearly all of Martin’s siblings died from suicide, or overdoses, or drank themselves to death.  ALLEGEDLY. He has only one sibling remaining.

The summer after Michele died, Martin sent one of the adopted kids to the Ukraine on a one way ticket. Her name is Giselle she was sixteen at the time.  Perhaps she was sent because she had a G name. Martin and Jyllian, stole her identity and Jyllian renamed herself Jyllian Giselle MacNeill. She claimed to be married to Martin on the day of Michele’s death. Now THAT is creepy.  The pair eventually got busted.  Martin served four years. ( He also served a three year sentence for another incident concurrently.)  Jyllian was sentenced to 21 months and tried to flee to Mexico before serving her time.

Also in 2009 Martin was hit with more charges involving identity theft. The short version of this story is that the house was in Michele’s name so after she died, Martin acted as Michele’s attorney and pretending that she was still alive, drew up papers to put the house in his name. Then Jyllian placed an illegal million dollar lien on the house to block the children from trying to get the home. Alexis was at this time desperately trying to adopt the younger adopted siblings from the Ukraine.  The cases against Martin and Jyllian regarding the house have not yet been tried. UPDATE: It looks like they have been to trial on this issue and Jyllian got 36 months of probation. This could have been part of a plea deal for her to testify against in Martin in the murder trial. She testified in the pretrial hearings. Her testimony was not particularly helpful to the prosecution’s case. She said they had been having an affair since 2005 and that Martin had moved her into one of his rental properties and given her a credit/debit card for her expenses.  They also exchanged letters while doing their time hoping to move forward with their affair.  I’ll update as I learn more about this particular case.

Looks like Gypsy did two weeks or so in jail for minor probation violations. She failed to update her address with her PO and she was driving a silver BMW owned by MacNeill without registering it to avoid the financial implications.  Also, get this, the outfit she wore to her sentencing was Michele MacNeill’s. She showed up to court in Michele’s clothes with her daughters sitting in the front row!

After Michele’s death, Martin changed his will leaving all of his children only $1 and leaving the rest to Jyllian under a fictitious name.

Although I drew on many sources for this post, the primary source, and one I highly recommend you read in its entirety, is a Deseret News Article found here.

Edited to update the mistress’s correct name. There seem to be several aliases for this woman. But the Deseret Sun who reported directly from the courtroom lists her legal name as Gypsy Jyllian Willis. I made corrections to reflect this.

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41 Comments

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41 responses to “Martin MacNeill Has Led An Interesting Life!

  1. Angel

    Thanks for this background info, TT. The wrong person is dead! I cannot understand why any woman with common sense would want to stay married to him. She was probably threatened he’d kill her if she did leave, but to even agree to a face lift. There should have been a way out. This guy is a predator, scum bag on the world.

    • Mya

      Some people take the vows of marriage so literally that even if they know their spouse is a lunatic asshole, they will still stay til death do they part. Perhaps she was extremely religious and couldn’t bring herself to break her vows.

  2. eg

    His life DOES read like a Lifetime movie!!! But he sounds like a VERY evil man.

  3. steve

    this guy really is something. The pills were flushed so they couldnt be counted. How did he keep his dr/lawyer status after the felony convictions?

  4. Tango

    This story is so sad. If only Michele had listened to her family, if only she realized anyone threatening suicide is not marriage material, if only she woulda said f u to him about the facelift and bolted… so many “if onlys”. It is truly scary how many people he may have murdered, scary that people like him walk among us.

  5. Tammy

    I saw this story on one of those crime shows like Dateline or 20/20 a while back. It was very interesting and had and interview with Gypsy’s sister. I found a link to a 20/20 episode from February 2011 (not sure if it is the same one) but wont post it – it is easy to find on a google search. Check it out – if it is the same one I remember it was very interesting with interviews

  6. eg

    Good Morning TT! I have a question off topic, when we change computers, are we given a new “thingy” (icon, symbol,) by wordpress or you? I don’t know what it’s really called. I had to change pcs lately, but I made sure you are on my favorites list. Hope you are having a great Sunday!

    • Um morning, three hours later. :) WordPress generates your thingy. :) Or you can go to gravatar and use a picture. Apparently that is complicated. I don’t remember how I got mine to work here and everyone generally has questions I don’t know the answer to get it to work. It might be an interesting way to spend a Sunday afternoon though.

  7. Was Michele so desperate to be married she settled for this whackjob? I mean, really, what the fuck was she thinking?

    • She was youngish when she got married and he was in her church (Mormon), mix that with her family thinking he was a little dangerous and she found him handsome they were married. The forgery thing was proof her mother was right. Who at that age wants to admit their mother was right? Especially about something so serious. Then they started having babies and he was going to be a doctor. She didn’t really know about anything but the first forgery which was before her time. He cries and says he made a mistake. The porn and other women she found out with in the 2000s. She blamed herself for doubting him. By the time she knew he was going to kill her,… she was on lots of medication. By then it was too late. That is my THEORY anyway,

      • TT, you make a lot of sense. Thanks for explaining. Poor lady. I hope they cut his fucking balls off without anesthesia. Then stuff the bloody nuts in his mouth after. Ha ha. Piece of sadistic shit; I hope he bites it.

  8. Katherine

    What. The. Phuck. This is a real person? All of his siblings have mysteriously died from overdosing or suicide? What an evil, sadistic excuse for a human. Sounds like there are zero redeemable qualities. I am floored.

  9. Tamara

    This is crazy. Very interesting to read about but so scary to know he’s a real person who was doing this. Thanks For the background

  10. Tamara

    Omg! I can’t deal with this she wore the wife’s clothes to court?!???? This is too much crazy

  11. eastjames

    Why do these crazy fucked up people gravitate toward the Mormon religion and what is their deal with killing people in the bathroom? Maybe he’ll testify during his trial for 18 days, say he was in a fog, try to paint Michelle as a pedophile, then tell us all it was self defence because she was attacking him.

    • eg

      @eastjames……..now THAT is a good question about the Mormon thing (not that that religion is to be singled out but,ijs) I’ve wondered about that too. But I swear this mans’ story reads like a movie or book. And to think people like that are all around us. I was married to a schizophrenic/bipolar whatever, person for a long time, but (I) finally grew a backbone and ended it. Some people stay in those relationships (for whatever reason) longer than others, and some wait til it’s too late like Michelle did. The person I was married to was not Mormon though, and neither am I, so I’m not picking on the Mormons.

      • eastjames

        I’m not picking on the Mormon religion either I just find it interesting that these people always have serious mind control issues so they seem to be drawn towards Mormons. Connection or coincidence? Anyway, sorry to hear that you had to go through a tough relationship like that but at least you had the courage to get out.

    • Makhaw

      Eastjames, your comment made me laugh!
      Thanks TT for covering this case….should be very interesting.

    • JustSaying

      eastjames, it’s not so much that these types of people gravitate toward the Latter Day Saints (Mormon) theology as the theology, taken to extremes, can create this type of overcontrolling, narcissistic behavior. In Mormon churches, only men can pray directly to God. They also give blessings, which are supposed to be the very words of God. Women must communicate to God through a member of the priesthood (which is about any male over 12 in good standing in the church). Marriages that are sealed in a Temple are considered marriages “for time and all eternity”; any trouble or difficulty that occurs on Earth will be straightened out by the Almighty in Heaven. AND….women cannot pass the veil of Heaven (the barrier that keeps out demons and the unsaved and other riff-raff like you and me) by themselves. Women must be brought through by a member of the priesthood. So… women like Michele, who I assume married her husband in love and good faith, was raised to believe that he was (as a man) somehow above her on the worthiness scale. She may have trusted that whatever troubles they had in this life would be straightened out in the next. She may have been afraid that if she rocked the boat, he would retaliate by not bringing her into Heaven. If she was a woman of faith in her church, she had not this life, but all eternity to lose. I think the slimy cretin that murdered her used her faith against her, to hold her and control her. He could probably quote all kinds of LDS ‘scripture’ that justified his actions or absolved him of guilt. Martin MacNeill clearly twisted his theology to believe that he was superior in the eyes of God because he is a man. Thankfully, his oldest daughters are fighting back.

      • JustSaying

        PS – I don’t hate Mormons. Remember that a LDS bishop warned Michele’s mom about Martin MacNeill.

      • eastjames

        You’ve made an excellent point for the controlling male aspect but there’s also the flip side with Travis Alexander and Jodi Arias. She seemed to sense a vulnerability in him due to his religion. Its like a predators playground.

      • JustSaying

        eastjames, you’re right about Jodi Arias. She tried to buy him with sex, and he was more than willing. But by the church standards, that made her not worthy of marriage, and when he made that clear, she made him pay with his life. Great comment about “predators playground”. There are lots of “post-Mormon”, “ex-Mormon”, “recovering Mormon”, etc sites out there with sad and horrible stories to tell.

      • eg

        @JustSaying….Wow, that is fascinating and scary all at the same time. I didn’t realize it was THAT involved, and it sounds like women (in that religion and others also I suppose) have no rights, except to have babies and sex at their husbands’ say so. It all sounds so twisted, and this man was/is definitely twisted.

      • Unless there is a delay trial should start soon, at 1 ET.

      • Talk about the garments that keep them sealed and closer to God. I was born into the church and baptized at 8.My grandma’s dad was an Elder,and healed some of his children via touch and prayer.(It’s ok to laugh, I understand.) His wife spoke in tongues. My great aunt did our genealogy and claims we’re related to Joseph Smith. Probably true, seeing as how he had tons of wives and kids. One day I tried to ask a woman who had become Mormon about the garments, and she told me “it’s a private matter that is not to be discussed.” Excuse me you convert? LOL I grew up in Nv very close to Ut,and still travel to Ut to go to the Dentist. There’s a store that was a Millers Outpost when I was in high school in the 90s, that is now a Mormon Garment store of some sort. You are not even allowed in the store without your temple card, so needless to say, my mom and I have never been in there, but I do go to the Mormon thrift store, Deseret Industries lol.

      • mormonwoman

        Are you serious about the “only men can pray to God” statement and the stuff about her being afraid that she couldn’t retaliate because he couldn’t bring her into heaven? I have been a Mormon since the age of 8 when I was baptized, and the your comments are the biggest load of crap

        I have ever heard. Maybe you should know something about the LDS faith before you
        ssstart explaining what our reldigion teachers. For you information, women are held in very high regard in our church. And I know because I am a woman.

  12. MeMyself

    Wow! I hope they investigate all the overdoses and suicides of his siblings! What a sick bastard! Also, his son Damien overdosed and committed suicide after Martin killed Michelle? Sounds like Martin may have a hand in his son’s “suicide” as well.

  13. loriflack

    So sad for the babies he spermed and his siblings. Even though he probably was suffering from mental problems, he still chose to act out in a way that destroyed countless lives. People like him should be forced to donate their brains after death to study.

    • While, obviously you could not force “these people” to donate their brains to science. I would imagine if they were asked they would take it as a huge compliment to their intelligence and readily agree. Don’t you think?

  14. Twilly

    Oh my gosh he is a legit and total psychopath. I shudder at this reminder of people like him among us.

  15. i can see absolutely no way he could plead not guilty. about the only thing he may not be guilty of is being another race or something. this guy is bat shit crazy, there is a fine line between genious and insanity and this dude crossed it. i cannot see how people are this way, they have no moral compass… and his girlfriend. wow! so how many kids are involved int his mess, meaning how many are hers before him, theirs together, adopted whatnot?

  16. aemish

    Stellar summary! I had no idea there was this amount of creepy volume to the back story!

  17. Tamara, girl, THANK YOU for all that back story tea. I haven’t followed this case like I did the Arias case,but that was so interesting, I might have to start watching it on tv. I’m still stuck on him faking Schizophrenia and collecting VA benefits! I’ve always heard he was the one who forced his wife to have the face lift, that she didn’t want it, then yesterday on HLN I heard that when she died, and people were there to witness his acting, he was yelling at her saying, “Why, why did you have to have the surgery?” SMDH I want to choke him. His wife was beautiful, before the surgery.May she RIP.

  18. Janet Leah Schinco

    and the law piddles into another mockery of rules, ethics and further victimization of the family.

    To the lions, I say! Her too – wearing something new and very tacky. When they are done, his peers should be whipped publically with reeds for being idiots.

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