Saturday, July 28, 2018

"Secrets of Pleasant Grove", Utah, on Dateline: the MacNeil "big family" case

The Dateline episode on Friday, July 28, 2018, “Secrets in Pleasant Grove” certainly makes us question the old Mormon implementation of “family values”.  The basic link is here

“Pleasant Grove” refers to a town in Utah (formerly "Battle Creek"), about 30 miles south of Salt Lake;  there is a town by that name in California and a neighborhood in SE Dallas where I used to own a condo in the 1980s.

Martin MacNeil has been both a doctor and lawyer, and had fathered four children and adopted four more (apparently from overseas, including Ukraine) in his marriage to Michele.  That seems to comport with traditional LDS family values centered around procreation as activity that socializes men into responsible lives that can take care of others in a more general sense.

It seems as though MacNeil got into an affair, and then demanded that his wife, at age 50, have a facelift.  Then in a mysterious sequence she died in her bathtub. It was said to be from a heart attack, and MacNeil claimed to have done CPR – yet she vomited water when the EMT came.

The episode traces his previous fraud convictions and eventually he is convicted of murder.
Normally if you were a doctor and lawyer, you’d wonder how you could have time for eight kids.
By Don LaVange - Flickr: Looking West, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

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