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Martin MacNeill attempts suicide behind bars

NEED TO KNOW
  • Former Utah doctor Martin MacNeill was convicted in November of first-degree murder for his wife's death
  • Utah County Sheriff's Office says MacNeill was rushed to the hospital Thursday night
  • Authorities say MacNeill used a razor to cut artery near his groin
Martin MacNeill attempts suicide behind bars

Martin MacNeill, the former doctor convicted in November of his wife's murder, has been hospitalized after attempting suicide, the Utah County Sheriff's Office announced on Friday.

Deputies at the Utah County Jail discovered MacNeill at around 5:30 p.m. Thursday during routine rounds, according to a press release from the Utah County Sheriff's Office. "Those Deputies intervened," the release says. 

Jeff Robinson, the Bureau Chief of the Utah County Attorney's Office, said MacNeill used a razor to cut his femoral artery, which is located very close to the groin.

Sgt. Spencer Cannon, public information officer for the Utah County Sheriff's Office, said MacNeill was uncooperative with medical officials as he was taken to the Utah Valley Regional Medical Center. Officials said doctors performed surgery to repair his wound.

Read more: A timeline of the MacNeill case

MacNeill is under the supervision of a guard while he remains in the hospital, according to the press release. Robinson said MacNeill will be placed on suicide watch when he returns to jail either Friday or Saturday.

MacNeill was convicted of first-degree murder and obstruction of justice in the death of his wife, Michele MacNeill, on November 9. Prosecutor Chad Grunander said in his closing argument that MacNeill "carried out a cold and calculated plan to murder his wife. He relied on his knowledge and experience as a doctor and also as a lawyer to accomplish this."

Read more: Witness says MacNeill told her he never loved his wife

Michele MacNeill's body was found by the couple's 6-year-old daughter in the bathtub of their family's home on April 11, 2007. She was recovering from face-lift surgery and had a powerful cocktail of prescription medications in her system at the time of her death.

Prosecutors said Martin MacNeill pressured his wife to have the surgery so he could then drug and drown her to continue an affair with his mistress, Gypsy Willis.

MacNeill will be sentenced on January 7. He faces 15 years to life in prison for murder, and he could be sentenced to up to 15 years for obstruction of justice.

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