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Judge still determining whether 12-year-old can testify in Martin MacNeill murder trial

PROVO, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - The daughters of Martin MacNeill, The Pleasant Grove doctor on trial for the murder of his wife, are set to testify against him. The eldest daughter took the stand today, but the question is will the youngest, 12 year old Ada be allowed to take the stand.
PROVO, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - The daughters of Martin MacNeill, The Pleasant Grove doctor on trial for the murder of his wife, are set to testify against him. The eldest daughter took the stand today, but the question is will the youngest, 12 year old Ada be allowed to take the stand.

The concern is whether or not little Ada's memory has been tainted. She was the one who found her mother unresponsive in the tub; at that time she was just 6 years old.

Ada’s guardian, Alexis Somers, is one of MacNeill’s other daughters. Alexis has long believed her father Martin MacNeill is guilty of killing her mother. Alexis was the one who asked many questions of Ada for the investigators who were looking for clarification on answers Ada originally gave to the Children's Justice Center shortly after Michele MacNeill died.

The defense claims Ada’s testimony has changed over the years; that the older sisters either unconsciously or intentionally tainted Ada’s memory.

During an evidentiary hearing Thursday morning Alexis Somers told the court, "I know she is aware that I think my dad killed my mom."

Defense Attorney Randy Spencer made the case before Judge Derek Pullan saying, "Obviously from the defense's stance we believe there has been more intentional influencing of the children and that has led to Ada’s memory remarkably improving four years after the events allegedly occurred."

Fourth District Court Judge Derek Pullan also weighed in on the conversation asking of the defense, "In your analysis you would agree that the mere fact that children, as a general rule, are more susceptible to suggestion than adults? The mere fact that, that may be true doesn't disqualify the child."

Judge Pullan didn’t make a determination Thursday. He expects to make a ruling on whether Ada can testify Friday morning.
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