A civil case that has its roots in 10-year-old child-sexual-abuse allegations and the disturbing fate of a baby's corpse will begin an eight-day jury trial April 23.
In a City Weekly February 2009 cover story, "Hear My Plea," Kareena MacGregor recounted how as a developmentally delayed 12-year-old she was sexually abused by neighborhood youths, two of whom were the sons of a senior police officer.
Unaware she was pregnant by one of the youths, then-15-year-old MacGregor gave birth to a stillborn fetus in the bathroom of her parents' Sandy home. She eventually was charged with murder, only to battle for years to take back a guilty plea she gave under duress. She eventually found, in Utah's Supreme Court, a judicial body that believed her.
In 2008, MacGregor filed a civil case against an LDS bishop and the parents of her alleged abusers—whom she had gone to for help, only to be turned away—the LDS Church, the three youths she alleged had sexually abused her, and the two mortuaries that had handled the remains of her baby and not informed her of its supposed disposal.
Now, four years on, the LDS Church, the bishop and one of the mortuaries have been dismissed from the case, and MacGregor and her family will have their day in court. So, of course, will those she has long held responsible for not only all the years she lost to the criminal justice system, but also, among so many priceless things, her innocence.
One of the unanswered questions from the original court proceedings was what happened to the infant's remains. Two years ago, MacGregor's mother, Alona, after a lengthy, painful search, finally encountered the remains of "Baby Boy MacGregor" mislabeled in a mortuary.
Whether, as seems likely, the defendants' attorneys will attempt to re-try the murder case, Kareena MacGregor will finally have an opportunity to face at least some of the people she believes so cruelly betrayed her.