A Utah Wife And Mother Slowly Realized Her New Husband Was Lying About His Identity
Margie Bult was terrified when she finally understood the man she married was on the lam from murder charges.
It seemed like incredible luck when Margie Bult met Sean Paul Lanier on her first night out with friends following a divorce from her ex-husband of 20 years. She was insecure about getting back onto the dating scene, but she still forced herself to go out to a western-themed bar with her friends.
As she stepped inside, she saw a handsome man perched at the bar, and he kept flashing a brilliant grin at her. Eventually, he asked Margie to dance, and the pair began making small talk.
He told her that his name was Sean Paul Lanier and that he preferred to be called “Sean Paul.” The New Zealand native didn’t have a discernible accent, but Margie didn’t think too much of it. She was too impressed with his plans to buy a restaurant and his polite request to get her phone number so he could ask her out.
Whirlwinds and Worrisome Trends
On their first date, Sean Paul told Margie that his siblings and parents had died in a car accident, and that his wife had died in childbirth. Still, he had a daughter in college in California and a son in college in Montana. Margie had three daughters of her own from a previous marriage and was delighted that Sean Paul was a family man.
As their relationship continued, Margie noticed some oddities about Sean Paul — he didn’t often look people in the face and would purposefully avoid being seen — but she chalked it up to shyness. He also had a habit of trampling over her boundaries, even going as far as to take her daughters for ice cream without her permission. Eventually, Margie broke up with Sean Paul because she felt he didn’t respect her.
Sean Paul, however, was heartbroken and worked hard to win her back. Eventually her view of him softened and they were soon dating again and eventually married.
Margie and Sean Paul had been married for one week when one of her friends called her and told her she needed to turn on America’s Most Wanted — the man they were describing looked exactly like Sean Paul.
At first, Margie refused to hear it, but her denial turned to curiosity and she began looking through Sean Paul’s things. In the drawer where he kept his documents, she noticed that a death certificate for one of his family members didn’t have the right date and didn’t have a state seal. In his wallet, she realized he had two social security cards with different numbers.
A private investigator was able to confirm that the numbers on both cards belonged to people who were already deceased.
Margie contacted the police and provided a drinking glass that had Sean Paul’s fingerprints. They quickly confirmed her worst fears — the man she married was not Sean Paul Lanier. He was Paul Steven Mack, a man wanted for murder in Ohio and California.
In order to arrest him, Margie knew that she’d have to go home and pretend to live her life as normal until the police could surround the house and then move in. Police came to call as they sat down for dinner, and he was arrested after jumping from one of the home’s windows.
Paul Steven Mack was found guilty of murder and sentenced in 1990 to 25-years-to-life. Mack died behind bars in 2018.
For more on this case, stream Evil Lives Here: “He Looks Like The Killer On TV” on discovery+.