Opening Statements For Utah Doctor Accused of Killing Wife

Prosecutors painted Dr. Martin MacNeill as adulterer, claiming he fatally drugged wife.
6:51 | 10/17/13

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Transcript for Opening Statements For Utah Doctor Accused of Killing Wife
This is a special room. Hello everyone -- -- Hernandez -- New York with his ABC news digital special report. You -- doctor and -- Sunday school teacher on trial for the murder of his wife. Because prosecutors say he wanted to continue an affair. Martin McNeal is accused by his children of killing -- -- -- prosecutors say the former beauty queen. Was forced to get a facelift and other plastic surgery by her husband and that -- and intentionally. Caused her to overdo it DD -- in Provo Utah with the latest. On this bizarre case to say -- least -- what do we know about how -- died. -- hi good afternoon -- we'll only know is that she died shortly after undergoing a -- now prosecutors say. That she was given a deadly dose of prescription painkillers by her husband who was taken over her care. While the defense argues that she died of natural causes related to a heart condition that she had pre existing into her surgery. And there is no evidence from the coroner at least that this was a homicide. And well actually that this at the beginning. At first the medical Examiner's constant death was was and natural causes but then if they reopened the investigation. And later they found the cause of death to be inconclusive so we've had conflicting reports and that's part of the heart of this trial to. And and we do know that she was discovered by one of her children and that they have been very active in this case that right. That's right. She was discovered by the end this -- eight in the field who is expected testified she is now twelve and that testimony itself has also been at the heart of some conflict between the two sides but it appears that she will be testifying. They also have older daughters Rachel and Alexis who have been very very vigilant in. Showing in in telling the media how they believed that their father is guilty and they've been doing so since very early on shortly after their mother stabbed. And the mother herself -- on to her daughters. Allegedly reportedly that she was suspicious that her -- That's right -- -- -- has -- Lexus has told ABC news in the past that. She said that her mother had come to her shortly before her death and said that she was worried and that if anything were to happen -- her. That look to your father. Suggesting that she was fearful -- her own safety. -- part of the prosecution's case here is that this the motive. It was another woman a woman by the name of -- Steve Willis what can you tell us about Gypsy Willis. That's right well one thing that both sides agree on is. That the two did have an affair but the defense argues that while Martin -- may not have made the best choices in life and that. He may have had affairs and things of that nature that he is not a murder however the prosecution has laid out a chronology recent opening arguments in -- at a chronology of this affair they say it began a year and a half. -- -- Michelle's -- they say that the two met on -- it became a sexual affair and that into single sex she moved in as the children's nanny. Just shortly after Michelle's death. We want to show you now portion from opening statements this is the prosecution describing how Martin -- reacted to finding his wife's body. -- to begin shall. Why would you do such -- thing. All of this for a stupid surgery. I told her not to do it. Why did you have to have this surgery. Why did she have the surgery. Why did she take all those medications. I told her not to do it. I'm a doctor she's dead. What is the significance of what the prosecutor saying here. Well the prosecutors are actually saying that Michelle's the one who didn't wanna have the search for a surgery -- -- she kind of reluctantly went into it. At Martin's -- however in that bite there are saying that that when she died during that time that Martin. Was kind of behaving erratically and talking to emergency Versace yelling to them. That white -- do what I told her not to do this surgery kind of selling it. Glasses and -- perhaps compatibility and trying to poke holes into his credibility and showing that perhaps he was behaving erratically and perhaps even mind. And now we have a clip from the defense Martin -- life seems to be focusing on shaky witness testimony his opening statements Apple's -- Testimony will hear. For most of these witnesses will be based on perceptions. That they four years after the events related to Michelle's passing. Occurred. And after their hat perceptions had been influenced. -- information they had been provided by investigators. Information provided by other witnesses. The media. Because there have been there's been a lot of media coverage on this case. Or simply the passage of time. Affected these witnesses. Memories. -- shaky witness testimony and the passage of time it's been six years since Michelle Martin's death. Is that what the defense is banking on. It's part of what they're banking on the fact that it's not only been sixty years but the fact that this case has been so front and center in the media that people already have their perceptions. And they also aren't talking about the credibility of certain witnesses for instance -- and Rachel the older daughters. Are supposed to be expected to be star witnesses for the prosecution and during the opening arguments. The defense attorneys talked about the fact that. Elect says his testimony is going to be in question because she's changed her story it's not consistent so what you can expect to see during this trial. Is the defense kind of poking holes in witness testimony and -- whole premise is the fact that -- he may not be a good guy. But. You have to base your decision putting -- On reason and fact rather than emotion. We've seen opening statements now what are we expecting next. Well right now doctor Thompson the one who would actually perform the -- in the first place he has taken the stand as -- just a few minutes ago. When I left the courtroom and we can expect them as distilled in the witness testimony. Did you write covering this case for asking you -- thank you so much for joining us this is that an ABC news digital. Special report -- now this New York.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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