“You Are What You Listen To“
A few years back, Psychology Today used this title to discuss in an article, the lack of research on the type of music people prefer and its effect on their mood. And to basically confirm that people who like metal are not much different than the ones who like classical music.
Even if there is a lot of research on music therapy, there is not much research done on music in general. Considering that people usually rate the importance of music in their life as very high, you would think that it would be a research of choice.
But people often love several styles of music, so it makes them versatile in actions and choices. And the rare cases of violent people who love metal are not proof that the music had an influence on them. It could simply show that some people with mental illnesses like intense music because of their inner turmoil or for no significant reason at all.
When you consider that millions of people love Metallica, it sure does not mean that they all have a violent tendency.
The magazine TSS came up with an article more recently about a 2009 study of ‘’Metal Music and Mental Health in France that says:
‘’As a whole, metal music fans have levels of anxiety and depression that are similar to and lower than levels in the general population. Specifically, less than 5 percent of metal music fans surveyed showed pathological symptoms. This study suggests that opponents of metal music should re-examine the basis for their criticism.’’
The study speculates that the dark and morbid themes beloved of metal lyricists may actually be good for listeners’ psyches. The authors suggest that frankness in reflecting on death in songs may make metallers less prone to anxiety and depression in real life, when faced with realities others might have neglected to think about. Click for the link.
Chris Watts was a fan of Metallica and even had one of their symbols tattooed on his back. At 33, he was not an adolescent, but the crimes he perpetrated against his pregnant wife and two daughters on August 13, 2018, made people take notice because after burying his wife and throwing the bodies of his two little girls in an oil tank battery at his workplace, he downloaded the lyrics of Metallica’s song Battery at 10:10 AM.
Was he reflecting on death and his state of mind? Could those lyrics have been the only significant words he could relate to in his own lunatic state?
He wrote tender love song lyrics to his girlfriend in a card, but his powerhouse energy and fury on that day, were crushing and full on.
Many say that he looked calm on that fateful day, but the colleagues who really knew him noticed a difference, and all his subsequent encounters with friends, the cops and finally the media, showed a Chris Watts far from being calm and collected.
He always kept things close to the vest, but on that day, he was described as extremely nervous by his neighbors and his mumbling and body swaying in front of reporters gave most of us, the clear message that he was hiding something apocalyptic. I do not know one soul who was fooled by his demeanor.
”It’s not something I could ever fathom would happen in my life. My heart is racing a mile a minute. It’s earth shattering. My life has been turned upside down.”
While watching the security feed from the neighbors, he looked clammy and on the verge of fainting.
It took a little longer for his loved ones to see the unavoidable because the Chris they knew could have never hurt his family.
He was red in the face, gulping, crossing his arms, and his statements made no sense.
Even his plea for the return of his family was disjointed and nonsensical. He was basically telling the world that the house felt like a ghost town and that he wanted to take the whole thing back, but could not. He almost had the affect of someone on the Asperger’s spectrum.
He looked like he knew Doomsday was coming his way fast and furiously
The Watts Family
This is the picture perfect family photo of the Watts that appeared in the Magazine Thrivin published by Le-Vel, the MLM company that his wife Shan’Ann worked for.
Thrive and Le-Vel are elements that played an important role in this story, and they will be revisited in the next sections.
Chris Watts met his future wife, Shan’ann Rzucek King, 8 years earlier in North Carolina. They were both from the area and shared modest roots.
Shan’ann worked in a car parts store called Dirty South, while Chris was an auto mechanic at a Ford dealership after graduating from the NASCAR Technical Institute.
She had gone from nanny for the boss to bookkeeper and sales manager of the place. She was a hard worker and acquired a house on her own in 2009, after divorcing her first husband.
Chris’ passion was to one day become a crew chief for NASCAR and according to his former girlfriend, start a family. Hers was to become successful and be a mother.
Chris was born on May 16th, 1985 and Shan’ann on January 10th, 1984. They met in 2010 on Facebook after someone suggested Chris as a friend.
Shan’ann had suffered a setback because of health challenges and to hear her tell the story on Youtube, she was unable to sustain a relationship because of her ailments, but Chris insisted and stuck by her.
He took care of her and they ended up falling in love.
2012 was a big year for the couple because they moved to Colorado and came back to North Carolina to get married. His parents and sister did not attend the ceremony because of bad blood between them and the bride.
Only his grandmother and uncle were in attendance.
According to Shan’ann’s friend, Nickole Atkinson, the only time Chris had ever behaved cold and distant as he did towards his wife during the last few weeks of her life, was right after their wedding because of the estrangement from his family.
And this was happening all over again with the tree nuts fight that had spilled on social media, and was creating tension once again with his family who had blocked them on Facebook and were refusing to see Chris for a while.
He was silent and uncommunicative then and now.
To say that this incident did not have important consequences on the future of their relationship would be naive.
Shan’ann Watts was an open book. She was from a tight-knit family with Italian blood on her mother’s side that she was very proud of.
In my opinion, she grew up to be a strikingly beautiful woman with a charm reminiscent of old Hollywood.
A face à la Vivian Lee, an hourglass shape and a spunky, charming but fierce personality.
I do not think that I have ever seen a bad photo of the woman.
She claims to have been bullied and shy at a younger age in high school, but her brother seems to think she was always popular.
One of her Drama teachers gave a TV interview in support of her story, but her friend Lauren who went to school with her said that they were all snubbed by the rich cliques, but nothing ever serious.
Skipping College was no handicap for Shan’ann. She was very smart and could rival any graduate with her sales and people skills.
Shan’ann was once in a car accident and still had a visible scar on her forehead. According to her parents, she was also plagued with migraines at a young age.
In the midst of a divorce from her first husband, and working hard to have her expensive mansion built in North Carolina, it appears that she suffered a grave health crisis.
She was initially diagnosed with fibromyalgia and eventually, with lupus. it is not easy to identify the symptoms of these two afflictions, and the sufferers often become discouraged by the perceived lack of empathy from doctors, co-workers and friends.
Some people doubt the veracity of their health condition because from the outside, they can appear healthy. It is often tedious to find the right doctor because in the case of lupus, it requires several tests and a guessing game to confirm a diagnosis.
She had flare ups and was often tired and in pain, and it was undoubtedly putting a damper on her social and professional life.
Then, Chris Watts appeared on the horizon and basically swept her off her feet. Not literally because he was a very quiet and simple guy, but where it counts: with a pure heart and intentions.
He quickly joined the ranks of her goodwill circle; her forever devoted father Frank, her mother Sandra, her brother Frankie as well as a few good friends.
Unfortunately, things were not as rosy with Chris’ parents and it is difficult to know if they were simply incompatible or if one of the two sides was playing dirty.
Frankly, it could have been both sides, but it resulted in Chris becoming alienated from his own family and relegated only to the role of member of his wife’s exclusive club.
Colorado – Thriving for Success
Before they tied the knot, the two love birds, introvert and extrovert, left North Carolina for brighter skies and settled in Frederick, Colorado where the sun shines and the air is dry. According to Shan’ann, her doctor had suggested moving to the area as a way to improve her health.
In one of her Facebook posts, Shan’ann wrote at the time, ”Not even married and Chris signed his life away to build us a house in Colorado.”
According to one of Chris’ friend, he would have preferred to purchase a bungalow, but went along with the huge home to please the woman he loved.
Shan’ann had already owned a big house in NC, so he figured that she knew best, and it would be smooth sailing from then on.
She was the dominant force in the marriage and he was the follower.
It would end up being a huge mistake, but they went their merry way and resettled in Frederick, Colorado. While their house was under construction, they lived in the basement of their friends’ home.
In 2012, Chris had obtained a job transfer from his Ford dealership to the Longmont location in Colorado and settled down there while his wife stayed behind to sell the house and some of its content.
The house they built in Frederick, Colorado was a five-bedroom, 4,177 square-foot home at 2825 Saratoga Trail, and according to public records, they paid $399,000 for it. A very steep price for a couple starting in life on the limited salary of a mechanic, and subsequently, of a field coordinator for Anadarko Petroleum.
Once there, Shan’ann worked at the same Longmont Ford dealership, but in the internet sales department.
Greg Alore who hired them said “He was very passive,” “She was very aggressive with him. Bossy. Do this. Do that. Telling him what to do. Dominating the relationship. That I do know.”
Still, the couple appeared to get along. “They were just an everyday American couple,” Alore said. Shan’ann, he said, was “sweet as can be.” And the internet reviews about her work were all good.
An interesting footnote is that even at the time, both of their salaries were deposited in her account.
She eventually worked the night shift doing phone sales for a children’s hospital and in 2017, announced that she was quitting her job to become a full-time mother and housewife, working from home as a Le-Vel promoter.
It probably became too stressful and demanding for her after giving birth to baby girl Bella Marie in December 2013, and to Celeste Cathryn in July 2015.
Interestingly, the couple filed for bankruptcy a month before the birth of their last daughter.
Shan’ann apparently was so ill when pregnant with Celeste that her parents came to live with them for 15 months. I cannot even wrap my head around this concept.
This is how dedicated they were to their daughter’s well-being. And good ole Chris took care of the girls and his wife without missing a beat.
Not once did her parents see any signs of restlessness or impatience towards their daughter and granddaughters.
One interesting point to note about the extended stay of the Rzuceks in Colorado, is that they had filed for bankruptcy not long before Chris and their daughter, and might have formed this big family unit to share their financial resources and weather this financial storm together.
This is not a situation I can imagine many men enduring; overspending, sickness, quitting a well paying job, living with the in-laws, and two new babies. But he probably believed in his wife and decided to be supportive.
Le-Vel – Thrive
In April 2017, Shan’ann wrote on her Facebook “I’m really excited and looking forward to working from where ever my girls are!” adding the hashtags #Myfamilydeservesme and #Wontmissanythinganymore
Facebook and Youtube are the modern way to reach people, and Shan’ann took full advantage of this free media. She never stopped. It appears that at first, the girls were home with her, but she eventually enrolled them full-time in daycare to pursue her career.
Contrary to a lot of other MLM promoters, I found Shan’ann very natural on camera when she talked about the products. It was short on specific information, but very pleasant and personable.
She would recount her life trajectory and sounded convincing in her belief that Thrive had changed her life and by osmosis, the well-being of her family.
I usually cringe when the lady promoters start their sales pitch with constant interruptions to greet the newcomers. And go on and on with their phony routine.
The following parody illustrates what I usually think of their sales schitck.
Four Leaf Clover Peel for energy and luck
The last year of their lives, the girls were attending an exclusive preschool/daycare called Primrose school at Vista Ridge at the cost of $500 a week.
These lovely girls were growing like weed and looked very happy in spite of minor health problems, mostly related to their immune system.
Shan’ann believed in Thrive and used it daily. So did Chris. According to her sales pitch, she had less pain and more energy since taking Thrive. It consisted in pills for him/her in the morning, a shake and a DFT patch, that they were supposed to call dfts.
The reason people like Shan’ann had less pain could be because of the White Willow Bark which is nature’s Aspirin. The energy boost can stem from the Green Coffee Bean extract. Garcinia Cambogia is advertised to burn fat and is quite trendy.
As safe as these popular ingredients sound, they can have serious side effects. Click to read what the Journal of gastroenterology had to say about the intake of Garcinia Cambogia and its effects on the liver in certain instances.
We never know how we will react to a product. The same principle applies to some medications, but they have been tested and we take them under the supervision of a doctor.
You can also read the article on the thousands of hospitalizations that happen every year because of supplements not unlike Thrive, and too much caffeine.
I personally read positive and negative comments about the products. But this article is from someone whose editor was actually sued by Le-Vel. It contains information and product testimonies. Click to read.
The comment below is only a small sample of what is posted about this type of product.
” My husband stopped the patches and he went angry. My lovely, quiet, caring, would not hurt a fly husband had two days of being angry.”
Click for a breakdown of all Thrive ingredients from Supplement Clarity, including Synephrine (orange bitters) that chemically looks like Ephedra.
After listening to several women selling Thrive online, I recognized some similarities in their presentation.
They were not feeling well, were constantly tired, depressed and could not muster the energy necessary to function all day. They became better spouses and mothers after taking the products.
So the goal is always to help others Thrive. A new found fountain of youth so to speak, and a way to make a lot of money by dragging others out of their misery. As appealing as it may superficially sound, it is a risky proposition based on fallacies.
Shan’Ann described her life before Thrive as ”living and breathing negativity and it showed on my husband and kids.”
She affirmed that since Thrive, her husband found her less cranky and if her children would be old enough to express it, they would say the same thing about her.
She also declared ”Chris used to have to do things in seconds, and now he has a few minutes before I get mad.” She even posted words of gratitude for her husband ”for putting up with 3 impatient and demanding girls.”
It sure sounds like life at la Casa Watts was no picnic for Chris before the shakes and dfts, and this is why according to Shan’ann, his motto had become ”Happy wife, Happy life.”
In the same token, Chris seemed to Thrive the right way by losing a lot of weight and finding the time to go jogging and exercising in his basement.
His wife described him as more sociable and always kind and patient, and herself as the domineering one in the relation. She declared that ”he did everything she asked.”
Whenever she promoted in person or online and he was home, you could find him in the background with the girls eager to help or move out of her way on command.
He even participated in some of her phone calls at night, and she started selling the products under his name by accessing his Facebook and cell phone.
A good friend of Chris who noticed some of his sappy Facebook messages about his wife and Thrive, took upon himself to ask him if he really wrote that stuff. Chris admitted that Shan’ann was usually the ‘creative source and author’ behind the posts.
During an interview, his ex girlfriend from North Carolina also remembered that Shan’ann would access his Facebook to either unfriend someone or write something on his behalf.
One could not help noticing that Thrive had become Shan’ann’s life and passion. By osmosis, Chris was following suit.
She incessantly documented their life on social media and it was often linked to Thrive. The kids would hold a Le-Vel banner and had to be on video during the promotions.
They were told repeatedly to say hi to everyone, and at times, you felt a malaise just watching it. And the way she would rave about her husband one minute, but devalue him afterwards on video, was also disturbing.
You could tell that Shan’Ann adored her children, but it sometimes felt like they were props. She expressed the desire to have a reality show with the girls, and had the incessant need to put them on display.
She also acquired quite a circle of acquaintances and her Thrive team became part of her every day life. She was constantly on her phone and would often include her dad Frank in the conversation.
It felt like an escape from her mundane life, and it did not appear to leave much room for a meaningful relationship with her husband.
I do not think that Chris derived much pleasure from this type of lifestyle, except for what it allowed him to accomplish fitness wise and maybe some of the travel destinations.
But he still acted as her cheerleader.
In a Thrive Video on Youtube, a Le-Vel promoter named Kindra Morse mentions dumping a non supportive spouse if it gets in the way of your dreams.
Knowing the microscopic percentage of people who make good money working for an MLM company, this message is wrong on so many levels.
She mentions being inspired by a speech given by promoter Chris Collins who had to make a choice between his spouse and Le-Vel when asked to choose between her or being on the phone constantly to sell Thrive.
He left his wife because nobody was going to stand in the way of the great future he deserved.
The so called free vacations Shan’ann earned were always with the Thrive gang and Chris would kind of blend in the background. Only the hotel fees were covered. She had to pay for the meals and would have to work extra to get the flights included.
Their new Thrive lifestyle was taking them down a familiar path of unpaid bills and uncertainties.
Shan’ann had qualified for a car bonus from Le-Vel, and leased a Lexus. You need $12,000 in monthly sales to get the $800 bonus, and if you default, you have to pay the car from your own pocket.
As much as she was doing well selling Thrive with her team, it was very risky to have entered into this contract instead of taking the $300 in cash that was the alternative.
They were already using this cash amount each month from Chris’ car bonus. But image is a big part of the Thrive sales pitch.
In her videos, she discussed replacing the Lexus with an Audi and wanting it all for her and the girls.
You could not help wondering why someone did not wake her up from that dream.
Chris was a beta male unable to have any kind of confrontation with his wife, and he was watching their boat sinking without taking out the raft.
Her mother declared on 20/20 that her daughter wanted to take care of the entire family. Her poor naive brother Frankie told cops she was making $500,000 a year at age 22, and could afford a big home in NC.
Chris had to purchase the home in Colorado under his name only because his wife’s poor credit would not allow them to put her name on the loan.
It sounds like she was perceived as the driving force, heart and savior of the family, when in fact, she was unable to manage money and lived above her means.
Her immediate entourage did not realize or did not dare tell the Empress she had no clothes.
In a Thrive convention video, you can see them test driving an expensive Tesla and talking about acquiring a luxury car. Knowing how broke they were at the time, it is surreal to watch them sit there with their patches on display.
At the end of August 2017, Chris let everyone know on Facebook that Shan’ann had an interior cervical discectomy and fusion with arthroplasty plant, aka neck surgery. He said that she was in pain but doing well.
This surgery was $100,000 and their share to pay was $27,000.
You add all the physical ailments their daughters suffered, and it made their lifestyle sound pretty unsustainable.
In a video where she wears a neck brace, Shan’ann mentions that Chris is texting her every 4 hours to remind her to take her pills because she is forgetful.
The trip to North Carolina – The Perfect Storm
Even if everything looked good on the outside, a storm was brewing in the Watts’ household. The mortgage payments were not paid for 3 months and $10,000 had to be withdrawn from Chris’ 401k to make ends meet.
When tragedy struck on August 13, the mortgage was due on the 16th and was probably going to be delinquent.
The girls had to be taken out of daycare for the summer for lack of funds. They were supposed to start again in the Fall.
Maybe Shan’ann was trying to save during the summer by staying at hers and Chris’ parents’ place, but the reason she gave in a video was that she intended to recruit in a new market.
It made sense because paying for flights for her, the girls and Chris did not represent many savings on the long run.
The trip that was at first supposed to last 2 weeks, became a 6 weeks vacation that even her father questioned. He said in a police interview that he warned his daughter against it because she tended to butt heads with her mom. The same way he did with his son.
There was a lot of love in that family, but also typical disagreements between two helicopter moms; a term that her own friends used to describe her.
Shan’ann had decided to also spend some weekends with Chris’ parents and his sister, and to go visit his grandma.
Considering that the Watts had visited them twice a year in Colorado, and even babysat the girls on occasion, it sounded like a good plan at the time.
According to Ronnie Watts, after receiving food recommendations from their son and Shan’ann, they had spent $300 in groceries to feed the girls as required, and were prepared to do many fun activities with them. They were thrilled.
They did not get to see the girls as often as their other two grandchildren. Cindy babysat her daughter’s two children a few times a week, but was looking forward to spend time with Chris’ girls.
They went as far as buying a pool and a trampoline to keep the girls entertained, and Ronnie took a week off to make himself more available. They went to great lengths to welcome their granddaughters and their mother.
While there, Shan’ann captured a video of Cindy Watts singing to the girls in her bed and they appeared to have fun. Her mother in law did not pay attention to the camera.
It would have bothered me to no end to have someone hovering over me, but grandma played it cool.
Not so much on another video taken on a visit to Aspen when Cindy and Ronnie Watts look like they are trying to ‘flee’ not to be taped by their daughter-in-law who is walking sideways while trying to tell Cece, who is sitting on her father’s shoulders, to say something to her dad Frank, and whomever else she is ‘Facetiming’ with at the time.
Once again, a situation of malaise for the viewer.
There is a video online of a very warm Cindy delighted to see her grand-kids when she arrived at the Colorado airport to babysit. There is another one of Mimi gently introducing newborn Celeste to Bella in Shan’ann’s hospital bed. Nothing but a loving and helpful Grandma. The one below is of Mimi reading to the girls when they were last in North Carolina.
In spite of the reasons invoked, one has to wonder why this trip really took place. Shan’ann was not in the business of leaving her husband behind without ‘supervision.’ She mentioned fighting with the girls every day, and we know that she had a difficult relationship with her mom.
Her friend Lauren said in an interview that she had noticed that Chris was different towards his wife weeks, if not months before she left.
Being pregnant with her health challenges must have been tough, and the girls probably acted out like any other kids would when displaced and in the company of other family members. And we all know that as adorable as Cece was, she was a handful.
Maybe the answer is simple; being pregnant and Chris at work, she could not handle taking care of the girls on her own.
Frankie Rzucek Junior mentioned how exhausting it was to be around this little jelly bean.
But a hairdresser from her mother’s salon who knew Shan’ann, definitely said that she was going to leave Chris. An attorney swears that he met her in NC and she asked him about divorce laws in Colorado.
Her parents did not seem to be in the know, but it gave the impression that she was trying to put Chris to the test. Before she left for NC, she was doubling on the sex with her husband, which was unusual according to what he had described as their usual intimacy.
Did she think that he would miss her and the girls and would appreciate her efforts towards his family? Was she assessing if she could live in NC in case of a separation?
Was the foolish expense of a condo by the beach an effort to rekindle their romance?
Not to mention the pregnancy in spite of her health problems and their financial situation. Chris mentioned to the cops that his wife was taking a lot of Imitrex for her migraines because the weather in NC triggered them. And we know that his coldness probably contributed to the stress. Click to read about Imitrex and pregnancy.
In an ‘ambush’ video she posted after announcing the ‘good news’ to her husband, he looks a bit shell shocked. She told everyone the baby was for him because he wanted a boy, and he seemed to have been on board thinking it might revive the relationship.
Was it in an effort to hold on to her husband?
She used this type of ‘surprise video’ to announce Cece’s pregnancy and he looked fine, but the audience at the time was their friends and family. Now, his reaction was displayed to her entire entourage and Thrive family.
Plus, she was announcing the pregnancy as a Thrive Baby so it would mean a lot more promotion and videos if the mother was ethically allowed to credit an MLM for her pregnancy. She was still using the patches and other Thrive ingredients while pregnant; not very wise if you ask me.
According to Sandra, her daughter’s first two pregnancies required fertility treatment ($$$), but her third pregnancy happened the natural way after only two tries. I find it hard to believe, but if true, it could explain why Chris could have said yes thinking it might never materialize.
Before his polygraph, Chris discussed the two pregnancies with the detective, and declared about the third pregnancy that “they did not really think it would happen.”
On the other hand, when his wife posted an ultrasound of the baby on social media, he answered that he loved her/him already.
Letting the Horse Out of the Barn
Her good man Chris was slowly feeling the Burn of their Duo. He mentioned that he could not talk to her. He had to obey and get with the program. His mother Cindy said that when his wife asked for something, he did not walk, he ran. The videos she posted were evidence of that, but also showing a very nurturing and involved father.
Their financial situation was dire, Thrive was occupying all her time and if he would ask her something, she would answer that she had phone calls to make.
Her former husband said that she lived attached to her phone, and it was before MLM.
It became clear that Shan’ann did not have friends. She had an entourage, and Chris was the provider and a flunky to be called in when needed as a ‘human jungle gym’ for the kids, massage therapist or lover. Not to mention a great looking prop for Thrive promotions.
He was at her beck and call. It is hard not to notice that her friends seemed to act the same way.
She had both families babysitting when they went on trips, her parents moving in for over a year, her friend Christina coming from Hawaii with her young daughter to spend two months taking care of her after surgery.
And what is there to say about Nickole Atkinson who was doing her hair, driving her, taking care of the dog and the mail and was asked to babysit the girls for a doctor visit and a weekend so that Shan’ann and Chris could go to Aspen? Maybe all that help was reciprocated, but never mentioned.
As Nickole had to work, another couple named Amanda and Nick were asked to babysit that weekend.
When for obvious reasons, Chris’ parents did not attend Cece’s birthday in North Carolina and instead, mailed her birthday gifts in Colorado, Atkinson was in charge of returning them to sender. Her way to say FU to them.
The woman herself had a nursing aid job, sold Thrive, had two children and her daughter was in daycare only 2 days a week.
Atkinson actually mowed her lawn on a hot day after pregnant Shan’ann lamented having to do it herself to appease Chris (yeah right, as if she ever had to cut the grass while pregnant), and came to pick up and deliver the envelope for the gender reveal. I admire friendship and devotion, but it felt a bit much.
She had been recruited by Shan’ann and called her bossy, but in ‘a good way.’
The minute Shan’ann and the girls left for NC, Chris came out of the barn to never return.
Chris probably had already admired 30-year-old Nichol Kessinger from afar at his work place where she had an office. His co-workers had, and one of them told cops he had seen the two having conversations.
She had studied geology, and worked for Tasman Geosciences, which contracted with Anadarko Petroleum. He had never approached her before, but because of his ‘new found freedom’, he started a conversation and a relationship ensued.
Later in the relationship, he wrote to her ” The first day I saw you, you took my breath away. The first day I had the guts to talk to you, I got lost in those stunning green eyes.”
I get what the man saw in her. She was strong and attractive and could dress down for outdoor activities, but look very alluring when she dressed up and wore a little makeup. And they had a lot in common.
They could open up and talk to each other. They felt understood. The ones who make this relationship only about sex, are totally off the tracks.
She was in perfect physical shape and they shared a love of exercising. He finally had someone to exchange with and go play outside. Nichol said that he had never gone camping before and did not know how to light a fire.
He told cops that his wife never went hiking, and that she wanted to take a fake photo of them jogging together to promote Thrive.
He had lost a lot of weight during that year and was in great shape. With her help, he learned to eat healthier, and to read food labels; which aggravated his wife a little.
He said that his wife did not want him to work out in the evening, and consequently, he did it very early in the morning before going to work.
His ex girlfriend from North Carolina mentioned in an interview that when they dated, Chris went to the gym 2 hours each day, but that Shan’Ann put a stop to it when they got together.
As a Gear head, Chris had found someone to share his passion for cars, and he was now allowed to reconnect with his old self and enjoy outdoor activities and nature.
A far cry from the superficial world of MLM, cell phones and staged portrayals on social media.
Plus, his mistress had a good job and was financially very responsible. A dream come true.
It is sad and unfortunate that a partner sometimes needs to step out on his spouse to come to realize that he/she was trapped in a bad but normalized domestic situation.
As he told the detective, never in a Million years did he expect to fall that hard.
He declared that he never knew that he could love this way.
He asked them to leave her out of this mess.
I always find it insulting for the former spouse when a partner professes undying love for someone new and pretends not having known love before, but it is not unusual. You hear that type of statement all the time. It illustrates the power of love and its erasing properties on one’s memory.
Even if I really do not condone affairs, we know they happen. It would be hypocritical to pretend that it is rare and that lovers should be thrown stones and condemned Medieval style.
What is awful is the way it is handled. Not that it happens.
It was the beginning of the end for Shan’ann. I can only imagine the stress of being pregnant with two little girls and your husband chooses that time to fall out of love with you.
Maybe it was not surprising considering the way he was treated through the years and all the things that were negated in favor of her lifestyle, but he was a grown man and you would think that he could have tried to regain control of his own identity along the way, and put his foot down about the finances and the impossible logistic of having a new baby at this time.
One of them had to be reasonable, and it obviously was not going to be his wife.
Their own dysfunctions had set them on a dangerous collision course.
His parents and sister had seen this coming since the beginning and in spite of Cindy’s worries about the pregnancy, they kind of were hoping that he had finally seen the light.
According to Shan’ann, Cindy and Jamie Watts had destroyed her engagement party, her wedding, birthdays, births, etc. Basically everything they were involved with.
They categorically deny not mailing invitations or contaminating the food; they had no clue that Shan’ann was avoiding gluten at the time. Jamie was actually removed from the bridal party because she could not participate in all the activities planned for that week. She had a job and a family that kept her from being there all the time.
How strange that the cops did not even bother interviewing Jamie or Cindy and took the word of Sandra for most things found in the discovery when she was not even there and they were.
The Nut Case
That summer, she accused her mother in law Cindy of wanting to murder Cece because her other older grandchild took a little cup of ice cream from the freezer and ate it near Celeste. Cindy is not the one who served the ice cream and she had purchased a special kind for Bella and Cece.
According to the Watts, the ice cream came from an establishment where cross-contamination with tree nuts was possible, but it was never served to Celeste.
Cindy believed that an allergic child should learn to face situations where she won’t be allowed to eat what the others are having. She was shocked by her daughter in law harsh reaction to the situation when there was absolutely no harm no foul. Maybe she should have obeyed Shan’ann, and instructed the kids to wait till Cece would go to bed, but there never was a threat of death or allergy.
At the birthday party where Chris took the girls on August 12th, the other kids were eating a birthday ice cream cake that the girls were not allowed to have. Do not ask me why Shan’ann demanded that Bella be deprived of a piece out of ‘solidarity’ for her sister, but the others sure ate it in their company. I do not see the difference.
Strangely, when the story was told to the police, both girls were allergic to all nuts.
When her mother Sandra recounted the event, it had a totally different spin: Both girls were served ice cream with nut chips on it.
And there were razor blades all over the house.
Her friend Lauren said in a police interview that Shan’ann told her that Cindy gave Cece a peanut to test if she was allergic.
And Jamie was accused of having put a bowl of nuts on the table in a grand gesture of defiance. In fact, she was not even present for the nut drama and had showed up just in time to pick up her children.
But to be fair, according to a childhood friend of Chris who was interviewed by the Colorado police, the girls had eaten ‘chocolate’ and Cindy was crying and saying she did not know they were allergic to it. So go figure.
It sometimes become a case of Chinese whispers, and we do not know what was really said originally or what had been retained by the listener. All we know for sure is that Shan’ann posted this comment on her social media:
”Today she let her other granddaughter eat ice cream that has all tree nuts in front of and next to my 2.5 year old that can’t have them. I said I didn’t appreciate it and removed my daughter. Her response was that she can’t always get what she wants.”
As to be predicted, Chris ended in the middle of this firestorm and no peace could be negotiated even if Cindy would apologize. This is what Shan’ann texted to her husband about the situation:
‘She’s evil and willing to risk your daughter’s life just to get under my skin. You and your dad are no different if you are OK with her behavior. ‘l’m not accepting l’m sorry from your mom, because she doesn’t mean it.”
‘There’s nothing wrong with me and l’m not crazy. I just love my kids way too much.’
The girls were never allergic to peanuts and Shan’ann made peanut butter balls on video while in her kitchen with the girls. Cece was supposedly allergic to tree nuts.
Several times in her videos, Shan’ann ate food that she would not share with the girls. And most disconcerting is the fact that in one video, we clearly see Celeste eating a lemon meringue Pro Bar that contains tree nuts: It reads on the label ‘Allergens: Contains Milk, Soy, Tree Nuts (Coconut).’ Click the link to read the ingredients from their site.
The teenager who babysat the girls shortly before the tragedy, revealed to the cops that Bella had confided in her that her mom had told her that she would never see Cece again if she ate coconut.
Her brother had pistachios in his bedroom and was not accused of having murderous intentions.
That really made me question her personality and sense of entitlement. Was it a power play to get Chris’ attention and make him take her side?
At the 2-minute mark, Cece is eating a lemon meringue Pro Bar. I agree with Bella, it does not taste yummy
He was distant so maybe a family conflict would arouse his loyalty. She would not back down even if Chris told her that it put a dagger between him and his dad.
It is hard to believe that the Watts women would have behaved so wickedly towards Chris’ wife when we know that they were well liked by many, and do not seem to have a bad history with their son ex girlfriend and friends who found them friendly and non intrusive.
Being a respiratory therapist, I am sure that Jamie Watts understood the perils of tree nuts allergies. Considering that the nut narrative tended to change constantly, it sounds like the Rashomon effect; because we do not have the versions of all the parties directly involved, it will remain the great nut mystery.
Maybe both sides were at fault, but to use the girls as a weapon and to keep Chris from bringing them to his parents’ house was totally uncalled for . It was all about obey and worship your wife or else.
He meagerly apologized afterwards because it was a loss cause to try to convince her otherwise. Instead, he prepared his exit.
If Shan’Ann thought this would make her regain control over her husband, she had miscalculated.
Figuratively speaking and with great horror, it probably put the last nail in her coffin.
Thriving to Death
Many so called pundits and crime revelers have publicly labeled Chris a narcissist, a psychopath, sociopath, etc.
To label someone, you would have to look at a compilation of their behavior, and in his case, it does not seem to indicate any personality disorder or mental illness that anyone close to him could corroborate. He was an introvert but it is simply a trait. Nothing wrong with it.
”For narcissists it’s all about power and control over others. Their lack of skills and ability to stick to budget is quite prevalent. Their inability to be financially responsible and truthfully honest about finances causes many problems to those who enter into relationships with these toxic individuals.
Financial budgeting to a narcissist is something they expect from others but never from themselves. They might use different forms to monitor their own accounts but never will they stick to maintaining any sense of financial responsibility. They might be the breadwinner making a comfortable salary yet expect others to make the sacrifices necessary for the family while they splurge on whatever they feel they need and want.”
If you look at this partial description and the grandiose state of mind, it is his wife’s behavior that comes to mind. But it is the role of professionals to assess them and certainly not on TV or social media.
Chris did not demonstrate aggressive behavior, law breaking, impulsiveness, stealing or antisocial traits during his life. What he did on August 13, 2018 came from left field.
Is there a Marshmallow’s spectrum?
There are “specific DSM criteria” for psychopathy; the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Making a claim against a defendant when there is “nothing in the record” is outrageous.
“Psychopaths don’t just turn over one day, and they’re all better now.” Legal ethics expert Ellen Yaroshefsky
When the relationship Chris Watts entertained with Nichol Kessinger caught fire, the man probably started to burst at the seams with mental anguish.
He might have doubled his DFTs and probably his shakes and according to Nikki, he was super hyper and unable to shut off his brain or sleep. He had lost 13 pounds in a few weeks, on top of all the weight loss since starting Thrive.
When he started wearing the Burn Duo patches, his Apple watch indicated that he was working out all the time, even if he was not. His heart rate was constantly elevated.
“I cannot stay still. I vacuumed the kitchen, entry ways and mopped them. Vacuumed downstairs and now moving upstairs”
Dr Shaun Holt, the medical director of HoneyLab, warns there are many reasons to be wary of the Thrive DFT patch, which is not supported by clinical trials. “Best case is that it is a waste of money, worst case is that it is dangerous,” he says. ”If sufficient levels of the ingredients were absorbed by the body, it could be dangerous.
“And something that really annoys me is the disclaimer on the label to seek advice from a health professional on the product. They have not done trials, health professionals do not know the levels, if any, getting in the body and so cannot advise.”
Watts might have felt awful at the idea of his pregnant wife needing his medical benefits and how it would look to her whole entourage for him to walk away. He would have become persona non grata overnight.
He did not want to lose his mistress and neglected to tell her the truth about baby number 3. Imagine how she was going to react to that ‘little omission.’ Hit the road Jack!
He probably felt trapped and that is when things took a turn for the sinister. How would he introduce a newborn to the equation if he separated? Nichol was a strong willed person, and he could read the writing on the wall he was going to hit pretty soon.
By all accounts, he was a great dad and doted on his little girls. Not once, were they not part of the conversation when he planned a separation.
He kept telling Shan’ann that he loved them and did not want to lose them, and told Nichol the same.
Something really went awry in that man’s brain, and even if some say that he was always evil and hiding behind a mask, I do not really concur because too many pieces are missing to come to that conclusion.
Shan’ann’s parents lived with them for over a year. His co-workers vouched for him. His friends and family did the same. And to this day, none of them seem to be able to reconcile the shift that happened in his personality.
It would have been a good thing for this couple to separate amicably; acting as good co-parents.
Shan’ann needed a stronger mate to keep her in check and Chris needed someone who could be in tune with his quiet nature and to have adventures with. Someone to talk to and not put him down constantly.
He was not strong enough to face his own wife. He could not find the courage to leave. It would have been hard but feasible.
Shan’ann needed to face her financial problems. She was going to hit a financial brick wall sooner than later, and the girls were not going to attend their great daycare or live in the big home. But it would have been fine. God knows she had enough of an entourage to make it. Plus, many men would have been interested in her.
In June 2018, Shan’ann posted about Chris wearing the new BURN DUO patches. He was hyper and could not stop himself. He looked on steroids on the picture.
Ephedra anyone? Side effects of the herb included heart palpitations, nausea, and vomiting. More than 800 dangerous reactions have been reported – among them, heart attacks, strokes, seizures, and sudden death. Psychosis, insomnia, and heatstroke.
Click to read the article from Harvard Medical School.
Top Le-Vel leader Kary Kruger posted a video on Youtube in 2016 to announce she was leaving the company to sell organic CBD oil sourced in Switzerland because some things did not sit well with her about the company and the many restrictions they imposed on what she wanted to accomplish in her field of wellness and pain management.
And she exclaimed about her new company ”There is real science here, oh my goodness how refreshing!”
I am not saying that the products he was ingesting made him kill his family. I am saying that his brain chemistry was probably affected and he was in the middle of a financial, marital and physical crisis that he could not deal with considering his introverted nature as well as his subservient role in the marriage.
His problems might have seemed menial to some, but he appeared unable to overcome them and harness his emotions. Watching the videos, it is not hard to imagine that he would one day rise up.
Being a sleepwalker, Watts had to be mindful of alcohol intake or central nervous system depressants and of exhaustion, fatigue and ‘bouts of insomnia.’ Again, not an excuse but a sign that every brain can be affected differently by the intake of shady substances.
“Someone’s thrivin’…Up for work at 4am. Just got home and now mowing the grass. ”
August 13, 2018
During the last few weeks of her life in North Carolina, Shan’ann appeared to fight for her marriage. She kept trying to reach out to her husband and fired a lot of texts to her friends lamenting their sorry situation. She looked very distraught in the photo she sent to her friends, and stopped publishing her usual videos and selfies. Some say there were more and they are buried out there.
Some have surfaced on the beach in North Carolina, where we see a very attentive Chris with his two daughters and her dad assisting while she is facetiming with friends and directing how the girls should behave in the water, but so far, nothing promoting Thrive.
She wrote him a love letter and mailed him a book titled Hold Me Tight. It was later found in the trash container in the garage.
On the other hand, she remained steadfast in her hatred and banishment of his family and demanded total loyalty from Chris; meaning that once again, his family had to take the back seat.
Am I the only one to see the cruel and dark irony of his wife ending up on the back seat of his truck instead?
She called them stupid and evil, and kept repeating that her husband had no balls. She wanted him to have the cojones to go against his family, but to remain submissive to her.
Much to his wife dismay, Chris eventually had the balls to shut down his Fakebook and to stop the financial bleeding of the family by insisting on selling the house. And this time around, he was not going to accept that his family be dismissed from his life.
I can only imagine her reaction if Chris would have tried to keep the girls from the Rzuceks because Sandra was loud and bossy and cooked pesto. Both sets of parents had a pushy wife and an easygoing husband. It was their model. Her brother Frankie said about his sister “she was my mom times 10 whether either one of them wanted to admit it.”
Once they returned home to Frederick, she eventually relented and sent his parents the ultrasound of baby Niko Lee. Ronnie called it an act of desperation, but she probably had realized by then that the marital boat was sinking.
His line of defense was to remain silent and not confront her. Her friends and family were telling her to give him some space and not to get upset. She expressed her desire to flip on him and his family, but tried to show restraint. He had never dared standing up to her, and what a time to start.
I Hate being Second to Those I Put Last
She wanted him to grow a pair but not at home. He told her that they were not compatible anymore and that he was fine with the girls and did not want the baby. He added that he might go to Hell for saying that but it was how he felt. He subsequently backpedaled, vacillated and took the blame.
Considering that he was allegedly on board with having a child, it was his responsibility to be there for her or to make things as easy as possible. It probably became an impossible dilemma in his head.
His compromising personality that his wife often disrespectfully described as his ‘lack of balls,’ led him to that place.
I am sure that he wanted out, but knew that leaving her to fend for herself would mean retribution on the long run. It is pretty obvious that he also realized that a divorce would not be smooth sailing with his wife.
She had every reason to be pissed beyond belief about this. I tend to believe Chris when he told his dad that the night of the tragedy, his wife told him, and justifiably so, ‘Fuck you, Fuck you, and Fuck you!’
She was already firing texts saying that she would fight him for full custody and would kick him out on arrival. I do not imagine someone like Shan’ann relinquishing custody of the girls; even on a part time basis with their dad. If forced by the court, would she have poisoned the girls against her former husband?
He had confided in Kessinger that the girls had started to repeat some mean things their mom was throwing at him, aside from the chicken nuggets.
It would have been easier to regain their respect and be more firm with them once divorced, and in his new surrounding. And in his own interest to see a psychotherapist during the transition.
When they flew back home to Colorado, things had somehow simmered down and Shan’ann went to Arizona for a few days on a business trip with her usual suspects.
Chris spent time with his girls, but saw Kessinger in the evening.
He was in love and ready to fly the coop. But I am not sure that he was thinking straight. As punch drunk in love as he was, he had to know that his dream would never materialize.
Nichol would find out that his wife was pregnant sooner than later and she would leave. And considering his type of personality, trying to be a single parent, pay child support and maintain a good relationship with his ex may have appeared insurmountable at the time.
He used to pay with gift cards and coupons when he took his mistress out, but now, he was paying with his credit card sending red flags to Shan’ann as he knew it would.
The same way he had parked the Lexus at the airport parking before going to join his family in North Carolina for the last week of their trip. She was pretty mad about that.
He was not allowed either to park his truck in the driveway like the neighbors did, and her car had to be in the garage. No questions asked.
Shan’Ann’s return flight from Arizona was delayed and she returned home just before 2am on August 13. She was exhausted and her friend Nickole Atkinson drove her home from the airport. She saw her enter the home and wave goodbye. That is the last time she was seen.
What came next was shrouded in mystery, but now that Watts has been visited by a Colorado team and gave a deposition to the investigators, we will hopefully know more. I personally had a hard time believing that he had planned to kill his wife and daughters that night, but the interview might reveal the facts.
Premeditation includes careful planning. There was none.
Chris knew that the neighbor had a video camera that would capture his truck. But he backed it up anyway into the opening of the garage, and loaded his family in the back seat on the driver’s side, knowing that the camera would catch him doing the deed even if not completely.
He left at around 5:30am to dispose of the bodies at the Cervi 319 field where he worked that morning.
He also knew that his work vehicle was equipped with a GPS that would detail his every move. The company was adamant about their employees using their truck only to get to work and back home. They knew if you used your cell phone.
Because of this GPS, the detectives knew exactly where he had stopped to dispose of the kids’ blankets. They described to him, the color of the garbage bin.
Disposing of his family meant that he would be caught. There was no way out. They would have found his wife’s body right away, and DNA evidence in the house and his truck.
There was no way for the girls and their mother to have walked out of the house without being captured on camera. He would have been the prime suspect in a New York minute. The kidnapping scenario would have been laughable.
Yes, Nickole Atkinson accelerated the process by calling the cops early in the day when she could not reach her friend and worried that she could have passed out in the house, but he would have been caught even without her blessed intervention.
Chris finished work early afternoon. The shit was going to hit the fan a few hours later anyway.
If he was not crazed, why did he not bring her purse, phone, keys and sheets? Everything was left in the house. His wife was supposed to drop the girls at daycare and go to the doctor. She missed both appointments. It was not going to be ignored by her entourage.
How on earth would he have got rid of all the evidence after work? He would have been captured on camera taking the Lexus to go dump the evidence. They would have seen it. Ignoring his wife and girls’ absence would have been suspicious in itself.
The guy was far from an idiot. They called him rain man at work and he was known for his incredible photographic memory and book smarts.
Was anyone supposed to believe that his wife could have left through the back door on foot with the 2 girls never to be seen again? This is a woman who talked to her dad every day of the year.
He called Primrose to notify them that the girls would not attend the first day of school on the 20th because they were selling the house, and asked if they were there because they were supposed to be back in daycare that day. How would it not be a red flag?
In a way, his actions said it all. They could not afford the school, the new baby and the house. His wife had total control of their finances. When he tried to discuss it with her, she dismissed him and did not cut back.
Shan’ann always was the one to deal with these matters, and why would he notify them that morning?
He also called the real estate agent. In his mind, they were selling the house and the girls were not attending school anymore so their financial woes were over. It sounds pretty out there to me.
The guy buried his wife in a shallow grave at work and left a sheet from the house on the ground nearby. Who does that?
He threw his girls in two different oil tanks and there was hair left on the rim. Who leaves that kind of evidence or even does that if not crazed?
A monster you will say, but I do not subscribe to this notion. His actions were monstrous but the man had to be in a state to accomplish this horror show; unprepared and messy.
I think that Shan’ann was ready to rumble when she came home because of the card charge for the dinner for two and words were exchanged. The way he described killing her in a rage makes sense to me. He jumped on her back, and she did not stand a chance.
He also told a reporter that ”she barely let me…” and he stopped himself.
Why would he also kill the girls? Because there was no way he could carry their mother out of the house without alerting them. He could not back the truck into the garage without waking them. He could have never explained why the girls were left alone at home. His wife would have never left without them. And according to his recent confession, Bella did wake up and asked what he was doing to mom.
Christina who lived with them for months said that you had to tiptoe upstairs. The girls were light sleepers and just parking in the driveway or opening the garage door meant they would wake up. Plus, Bella would get up in the early morning to come in their bed.
It appears that they were collateral damage.
There was no way out for him aside from giving himself up. And if he called the cops, the girls would witness the scene, and end up living with their grandparents with a dead mom and a dad in prison.
It was a series of very selfish actions meant to protect his ass from the slammer, and maybe the deluded notion that he was sparing his girls from this tragedy.
He tried to postpone the inevitable, but gave up soon enough. He could have easily refused to talk to the cops or demand an attorney. He could have dismissed the request for a polygraph. He did none of that. That is how unprepared he was.
How could anyone believe that he thought for a minute that his mistress would stick around after he would announce to her the ‘disappearance’ of his entire family?
She dumped him as soon as she realized that the scenario made no sense and he had lied to her, and went to the cops.
The Confession and Sentencing
The fact that Chris Watts admitted his crime pretty quickly and decided to accept a plea deal for the murders of his pregnant wife and two daughters left the public in an impasse, but pleased the DA immensely.
They could then spin the story any which way they wanted. Chris Watts was a monster who premeditated the annihilation of his entire family, and he had no soul and remorse.
A prosecutor usually has the chance to pontificate during his opening and closing statements, but if there is a deal, it usually does not happen.
Michael Rourke, District Attorney of Weld County, took it upon himself to tell us all how it happened even if the defendant in this case, never said how and why.
It allowed him to connect some dots that did not totally fit and to portray Watts as an irredeemable man who had no mitigating factors whatsoever to excuse his actions. Not that his actions were not incredibly revolting, but to create that image of the boogeyman was not accurate.
Rourke and his acolytes did not want to try this case. With good attorneys, there were several lines of defense. And Shan’ann would have been put through the wringer. It would have cost a fortune, and the media would have been omnipresent.
It would have been an uphill battle, but there was the matter of the abusive relationship his family witnessed and resented. The fact that we cannot say for sure when and how they were killed. If he had decided to stick to the ‘my wife did it’ scenario, it might have had some mileage, considering his stellar background, and the fact that his parents and some friends could have testified to some embarrassing things.
I suspect that they never interviewed Cindy Watts and her daughter Jamie for this very reason.
I am sure that her family did not want her name dragged through the mud. And the DA wanted to keep this one tight and easy.
Chris Watts confessed almost right away. He did not ask for an attorney, did not refuse to talk to the cops or to take a polygraph, and did not try to suck his parents dry so they would buy him a good defense.
And he finally took a plea to spare everyone the aggravation.
Was he in his right mind when he accepted a plea after spending all those weeks in isolation? I do not know. All I know is that the guy’s tendency not to defend himself prevailed.
Is it what a hardcore monster would have done? NO
It allowed Rourke to say for certain that Chris had made arrangements on Sunday during the children’s party to work at Cervi 319 because he was plotting the demise of his girls and wife.
Sorry, but he had heard his colleague talk about the leak on Friday and had suggested it then. Maybe it was to avoid seeing Kessinger at the office in case he might not have had the guts to tell his wife he was leaving or maybe he just offered to go.
Or it could have been part of his great master plan. But it certainly was not as definite as Rourke presented it. Even Watts’ boss said it was not that unusual and a possibility. Chris was the type to do that.
Rourke also minimized their financial woes and presented them as average problems most couples have. What? They were losing the home and drowning in debts for the second time.
According to him, being due in court on August 24, 2018 because they were sued by their homeowners association for financial reasons, and a frequently unpaid mortgage after filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2015, was business as usual and not a pressure cooker for the man who had signed on the dotted line?
Not to mention the shrinking of his 401K and the incapacity of his wife to get her spending under control.
Having lunch with her friends several times a week, visiting the manicurist biweekly, going on trips when only the hotel was covered, enrolling her daughters in the most expensive daycare when she had supposedly quit her steady job to stay home; as if wishing for fortune would automatically make it happen according to the Secret school of thought. Not to forget the lack of propensity of her husband to say enough dear.
Brilliant deduction my dear Rourke!
The DA left no wiggle room at all for a crime of passion with diminished capacity because of the domestic circumstances. I am absolutely not saying he should not have gone to prison for a long time, but life without parole is the ultimate punishment for a man who probably will never be violent again. It was his first offense and his crimes were of domestic nature, and not directed at society.
The DA did not see fit to take blood samples of Watts to see if something was wrong. Was he taking something else on top of the Thrive bars, balls, tablets, shakes, Pure, Burn duo patches and lord knows what?
Not to forget that he was googling 80 mg of oxycodone during that period.
He affirmed that Bella had fought for her life, and it appears to be true. It is a fact that could have been contested at trial, but Watts has decided to come clean about his attack on his own daughter.
Rourke said that the alcohol level in Shan’ann’s system was because of decomposition, but not according to the specialist I consulted. It could have been a combination of both. Not that it matters if the woman had a few drinks because of the stress she was under, but it could have corroborated the possibility of the confrontation Chris described.
The way Chris described mascara on her face sounds pretty indicative of an emotional scene and would have been a difficult detail to think of. Only a trial could have revealed if the stains we saw on their bed’s pillow case were from her makeup or not.
The credit card being declined after a purchase of hair care products at 2:30:am could indicate she was sitting in the den. But because it was simply a notification, it could have been from an automatic shipment or a from a purchase made earlier.
A friend of mine from Colorado mentioned how the judge had said that the Watts’ case was the worst he had ever seen.
She agreed that it was true, morally speaking because it was his own family, but domestic violence is in a category of its own.
Unless he worked in traffic court, she did not believe that it was the most gruesome thing he had ever seen as a judge. The disposal was heart wrenching, but only for the living.
There is also the fallacy of the plea saving Watts’ life.
Rourke and his band of brothers flew to North Carolina to talk to Shan’ann’s family and get them to accept the plea deal. They were all for it because it would close the case fast without more collateral damage, except for Chris of course.
The death penalty exists only in name in Colorado and with the election of the new governor who is also against it, there was no way Watts would ever be executed.
In fact, death row would have been safer for him and with an automatic appeal.
He would have been eventually housed with less dangerous inmates because of their type of conviction, and could have eventually get some relief of his living conditions.
Not unlike Scott Peterson who lives in a special death row unit at San Quentin and is alive and well to this day.
”A plea bargain is any agreement in a criminal case between the prosecutor and defendant whereby the defendant agrees to plead guilty or nolo contendere to a particular charge in return for some concession from the prosecutor. This may mean that the defendant will plead guilty to a less serious charge, or to one of the several charges, in return for the dismissal of other charges; or it may mean that the defendant will plead guilty to the original criminal charge in return for a more lenient sentence.”
None of this happened in this specific case. His deal was no deal.
US Toughest on Crime
In Canada, we do not have the death penalty. Life used to be 25 years without parole and in certain instances, inmates were declared dangerous offenders which meant that they would never set foot out of prison.
It has toughened somehow, but our judges continue to take factors into consideration when they hand out a sentence. You can read this article about the sentencing of Bruce McArthur who killed eight men between 2010 and 2017 and is considered very dangerous and a serial killer.
His guilty plea and age were deciding factors in his 25 year sentence before parole.
Watts spared everyone a trial. He expressed remorse. And he was not a recidivist. I find the US quite trigger happy when it comes to their justice system.
The Tyranny of Social Media
I read many cruel comments about Watts being tortured, raped, starved in prison, and hopefully murdered. People want him dead, and act and sound like he did something to them personally.
A pack of social media hyenas started a petition to have the photos of his family removed from his cell. They will be ignored by the correctional institution, but how so primitive of them.
Not surprisingly, some of the mainstream media ran with it and announced that Watts has photos of his trophy killings in his cell. Even Nancy Disgrace is still peddling that kind of stuff after her show was cancelled on HLN. Just to stir the fire and get ratings. Bunch of sanctimonious hypocrites if you ask me.
Sorry folks, but this is not how a civilized nation behaves. It is unconstitutional. The state has the right to take your freedom, but not to torture you.
In the name of victims they have never met, they want him to answer to them. A woman wrote ”I won’t rest till he tells me what he did to his family.”
When his mom told him touchingly during his sentencing that she forgave him and would love and support him forever as God would, comments popped up about how she had no right to do that because what he did was unforgivable. Who do they think they are?
If it bothers you that Chris Watts eats sweet cakes from the commissary, go back and watch your favorite reality TV show instead.
And the ones accusing Nichol Kessinger of being an accomplice and the reason he killed his family should take a crash course in presumption of innocence and due process. The only thing she is guilty of is to have believed that a married man would leave his wife. She told cops “I legitimately think his cheese was sliding off his cracker long before he met me.”.
Chris thought he was in love with her, but was not ready because of the usual problems associated with a divorce and his wife pregnancy. Yes, she deleted her phone messages and fibbed out of fear, but did not do anything criminal. She knew that the minute it came out, she would lose her job and be in the middle of a firestorm.
Who wants to get caught being the lover of a guy who killed his family? And she was as shocked as the rest of the world. She believed him to be a great guy at the time and thought that his successful wife was on board with the divorce.
Boorish people attacking her on social media for asking cop about changing her name.
She wanted to erase embarrassing messages talking about sex and nude photos. She never pushed the guy into anything, except maybe into keeping his word about the divorce. She certainly was not going to stick around and be taken for a ride if he was not telling her the truth about divorcing his wife. I do not see that as an invitation to murder.
And even if it said in the police report that she had googled Shan’ann on September 1st, 2017, they admitted later on that it was a typo; it was 2018, which made total sense considering what went on.
Plus, as most of us know, all her messages were retrievable. They do have the technology to retrieve erased emails, texts and times of phone calls from your computer and your cell phone, and it told them that she was involved in an affair, but not in any way in the murders. We will never know the content of their phone conversations and it is fine by me.
As if she would have left a trail and erased it at the last minute if she was involved. It is plain insanity, and comes directly from the minds of those who see crime as a replacement for their favorite soap operas.
She was not stalking Shan’ann. Maybe she was curious, but this is not a crime.
She was not lying when she said that she did not know he was married when they first talked. The first 2-3 times they had a conversation, he was not wearing his wedding ring; he says that it is because he lost weight, but it is easy to see that she could have thought he was single at the time.
When he eventually told her he was married and showed her pictures of his daughters, she sent him this work email on June 12th, 2018 ”It is always nice to find someone you can relate to. I enjoy talking to you too. I feel understood. I am looking for someone to build a beautiful life with. Build something similar to what you have done with your wife and those cute little girls. I believe in karma so out of of respect for myself, you and your family, I think it’s best if we keep this friendship at work.” And Chris answers the same day with ” I do believe in karma so I agree with that as well.
It obviously developed into an affair when he told her that his relationship was broken, and he was divorcing. She admitted that she should have waited, but the guy was seeing her 5 times a week for 6 weeks, so how was she supposed to know that it was not because he felt free to see her because of the eminent divorce?
I resent how she is being called North Korea all over social media by grown adults who should know better, and that the official documents released mention that she was watching porn and a video on how to prepare for anal before seeing Chris.
Or the tacky comments from the person who wrote the report about her creepy giggles, and how she had visited several porn sites, Wink Wink Nudge Nudge. How unprofessional.
It was inflammatory and hypocritical. She is also a victim of this tragedy and of the ignorance of certain social media lynch mobs.
It seems that when she realized what was crashing down on her, she googled Amber Frey and checked her book deal. Considering the similarities and how people have been trying to destroy her, it might not be surprising at all.
She became unemployed the minute this storm hit and told cops ” I lost my job. At first they said it was fine. A day later they let me go because my contract was up. I have a feeling that trying to get by for the next 5 to 10 years is gonna be really hard.”
I am not keen on the fact that she was letting Chris cover their dinner bill knowing his financial problems, but aside from that, the woman has no physical involvement in the tragedy, and it is not our place to judge her.
It is the media that should be blamed for making deals with people involved in crimes, but I would be the first one to criticize Kessinger if she ever pulled an Amber Frey on this case and hired one of the Allreds’ money hounds to boost her bank account.
When I wrote blogs for the website All Things Crime Blog, the owner of the site, Patrick Moore, who used to work as a College professor, PI, and is now a Court Consultant in LA, wrote when he closed shop that he had enjoyed delving into the True Crime experience, but would not miss the cruelty of rape comments like ‘I hope he bends down to pick up the soap in the shower‘ and other pearls of wisdom about inmates.
His policy was to post each and every comment, and the comment section often looked and sounded like a battlefield.
He also imparted some wisdom on me: accepting that in several instances, we will never know what really happened in a case, and it is OK and better than making up the ending according to our gut feelings or bias.
People insist on owning the right to the truth. And there are great divisions in what people believe about this case: Watts was planning the murders alone or his mistress helped or pressured him, Shan’ann killed the girls and Chris killed her afterwards, she is angel and he is demon, the girls were killed first, they were alive in the truck, they are average people plagued by mental and financial trouble. etc.
Videos abound on the case, from a Mukbang where you see a woman gorge on poutine and roasted chicken tell you about the case with her mouth full, recreations of the attacks by a dad jumping his own son to choke him on camera, new found ”evidence” consisting of shadows implying that two people loaded the truck.
A roll of soap opera followers keep giving donations to these Youtubers for the pleasure of extending their crime orgasm a little longer. Some of them obviously do not know the difference between free speech and making false allegations.
In spite of the autopsy results clearly indicating otherwise, some TV show hosts invent new details like Chris broke the girls’ bones to put them in the tanks. Or he was having several affairs.
Bella had abrasions and there was a question about her jaw that turned out to be gas and not a fracture. Not to say that her death was not horrific, but let us stick to facts and evidence.
Not to forget the psychics and spatial communications with the victims and the fake lovers whose legitimacy was denied by the DA’s office, but still appear in the media. How could they all be right?
As I have no dog in this race, I will always be open to new evidence, but even if Chris Watts himself told me that he premeditated the crimes, I would still see him as a human being who lost his way, and was not in his right mind at the time; for reasons we might never be able to comprehend.
He is still someone’s son and his actions have not only destroyed his family, but they have also damned him and so many others to hell for life.
Shan’ann’s parents think the devil was at play, but I believe on many levels that thriving might have been the devil in disguise.
Shan’ann had chosen Thrive as her new family, and Chris in his new found lunacy, tried to find his.
Music & Religion are lifelines in prison. Metallica and the Bible might become his constant companions.
I paid my dues in the cell
Be the toll of the bell
We gathered here today
To say goodbye to our old selves
Note from the author: Only respectful comments will be posted.
On February 18, 2019, a Colorado team of investigators descended on the Dodge Correctional Institution in Waupun, Wisconsin to surprise Chris Watts; FBI Special Agent Graham Coder, Frederick Police Department Detective Dave Baumhover, and CBI Agent Tammy Lee. They were no strangers to Chris who had met them during the investigation in Frederick.
To say that Watts was surprised is and understatement. We can ascertain that it was a carefully planned ambush on their part. They knew that if they had announced their visit ahead of time, he would have certainly refused to talk to them after consulting his family who is a bit savvier than their gullible son; a fact well-known to the team.
Any attorney would have shut down this shit show right away. The same thing that his parents were told when they tried to talk to their son before he took a plea. ‘’You raise the subject, and we shut this conversation down right away.’’
The group flew and traveled through snowy roads and sounded pretty rattled by the cold weather and conditions. That is how determined they were to talk to Watts.
Tammy had never visited her own brother when he lived in the area, but she was now showing up at the prison bright-eyed and bushy tailed to talk to Chris. Their first move was to ‘befriend’ him and assure him that the investigation/case was closed, but they were coming in simply to get more useful information to improve their techniques for future cases. Yeah right.
They sounded like old friends coming for a visit and made sure to tell Watts that he was such a special guy that he could help them figure out cases that could have similarities to his because of his unique character.
As he was arrested before they could squeeze the lemon even more, they still had unanswered questions but assured him that they did not want to take him to a dark place. REALLY? How much darker could they get than offering him tissue for his tears when talking about the murder of his family? They said that he was not forced to talk to them, but they would appreciate if he would.
Complete hogwash stemming from the Reid technique, but it worked once so they were going to try it again.
It is a well-known fact that cops lie during an interrogation and investigation. They are entitled to misrepresent the truth or the evidence to obtain a confession. But as the Watts’ case is closed and the plea deal has been accepted, how could they ethically assure him that it was a social call?
They plainly lied when they told him that the photo he did not want them to take, would never end up on social media and that the content of their conversation would remain within the department.
They went as far as asking him what he wanted them to do with the information he revealed. He wanted to inform his parents himself first (they were not coming for months) and certainly was not on board for a Dr. Phil special and the planetary dumping of the transcripts and audio tape of his pseudo confession.
And I call bullshit on their statement about the Rzuceks still loving Chris. The two Franks wanted the death penalty and Sandra did not, but do they sound like they have love for the man? No way. And what about telling him that the family wanted to hear the truth and keep it private?
He was in no way under oath during the exchange and they had no way to assess his mental capacity when he came to the visiting room or the veracity of his statements.
The guy was arrested, on suicide watch while detoxing from Thrive and coming down from the adrenaline of the tragedy, in complete isolation afraid of being killed, transferred in an assessment wing where he finally felt semi-safe and he is supposed to be stable enough to spring the truth on them?
The Reid Technique
The Reid Technique is a trademark of John E. Reid, an American polygraph expert who figured out a 9 Step formula of psychological manipulation.
The Reid technique is widely used in North America and consists in an interrogation with an accusatory process. Nobody is innocent until proven guilty.
The composure of the interrogator is understanding, patient, and non-demeaning. The goal is to make the suspect progressively more and more comfortable with acknowledging the truth about what they’ve done. This is accomplished by the interrogator first imagining and then offering the subject various psychological constructs as justification for their behavior.
In the case of Watts, they offered him Shan’ann as the guilty party and he ran with it, probably out of fear and desperation. He admitted as much during their recent visit. He told them that he would have never thought of it, had they not suggested it.
‘’The physical layout of an interrogation room is designed to maximize a suspect’s discomfort and sense of powerlessness from the moment they step inside. The classic interrogation manual Criminal Interrogation and Confessions, which was co-written by John Reid, recommends a small, soundproof room with only two or three chairs, a desk, and nothing on the walls. This creates a sense of exposure, unfamiliarity, and isolation. It heightens the suspect’s “get me out of here” sensation throughout the interrogation.’’
The Reid Technique is on its way out in North America. It has created a rift between police and communities. It is believed that a high percentage of false confessions in the US stem from this type of interrogation. You can only think of what happened to Brendan Dassey (Making a Murderer) during his own interrogation to understand the mistrust that exists.
This technique is commercially marketed to police departments and other law enforcement agencies with the promise that 80 percent of those interrogated will confess.
Other countries like England have rejected the Reid technique in favor of other methods like PEACE that uses the premise of being innocent until proven guilty. Click to read about it.
- Preparation and Planning
- Engage and Explain
- Account, Clarify and Challenge
As we saw and heard during his initial interrogation, agent Tammy Lee first asked background questions to establish personal information about Watts so that she could ‘evaluate’ him. She then asked “behavior-provoking” questions intended to elicit responses. She should have NEVER administered a polygraph right after when according to Watts himself, his ”mind was mush.”
It was all well and done but let me just say that Watts was an easy mark. This method would have never worked on someone like Patrick Frazee or Ted Bundy. It did not even work on Trent Bolte who kept lying and did not give them an inch. Practically any method would have worked on Watts
As mentioned in my blog, he could have remained silent, asked for an attorney and refused the polygraph. His nature and feelings of guilt led him to that quick confession.
He folded faster than anyone in the annals of Colorado criminal history. According to the agents, it was too fast, and the reason why they were coming back for more.
What is unacceptable is that they came back to Wisconsin with the same approach when the case was closed, and that he was not offered to talk to an attorney or his family ahead of time.
In his haste to get rid of this hot potato of a case, Rourke accepted the plea without a detailed confession. His fault. What they are doing now is trying to get the details through the back door because of the constant rumble about this case being rushed and maybe not as simple as portrayed.
Now You See It Now you Don’t
After the plea deal that Colorado was so eager to accept and convince the Rzuceks to go along with, the rumor mill started. Many were unhappy with the fact that Chris might have confessed to the 3 murders when in fact, his wife could have been the culprit for the girls; a theory that originated from them.
As he never divulged the reasons for the murders and many theories floated around, some people, including his family, thought he was taking the rap out of guilt.
Even Shan’ann’s parents said recently that they were not told everything about the case before they read their victim impact statement in court. Rourke was in a rush to get this done and readily accepted that the video of Chris’ truck showed him taking out 3 bodies and loading them in on the passenger’s side. Were they all going to swear to that in court? They now have legal eggs on their faces.
He is now readily ‘accepting’ the shadows as facts. Come one man, this is not scientific either.
Some Youtubers had noticed the shadow of a child being picked up but it was ignored because the case was CLOSED. And let us be real, the monetized Youtubers saw many other things on their screen so it took away from their credibility and we had no clue if it was manipulated or edited to attract traffic.
Frankie Junior Rzucek assured the social media world that they had SEEN the three bodies taken to the truck in a clearer video. Rourke had mentioned it in court. What else was there to say or see? A lot it seems.
Come out to the Coast and Confess your Crimes And Die Hard
At his sentencing, Watts who was shaking and crying, was judged to be remorseless by Rourke who predicted that he would never tell the why and how of the crimes. His parents urged Chris to eventually tell the truth with the assistance of his legal team, and to atone.
Apparently, he had already told his attorneys the truth before the plea and had decided not to put up a defense of his own accord. As his attorneys are bound by secrecy, we cannot verify this information.
It surprised many.
But the confession they were asking of him to atone and bring closure to the people impacted by the tragedy, was not welcome when it allegedly came out of the horse’s mouth. The awful so called truth he revealed was too difficult to hear. I sounds like they would have preferred to hear their scenario of choice.
So, he was supposed to confess to his crimes to bring closure, but instead of being grateful, they organized a social and TV media campaign to call him an even bigger monster.
Yes, that is how they roll in Colorado. Now that Watts had finally found a place in Wisconsin where he could atone and find some small ways to make amends, they basically blew their dog whistle to make sure the signal would be heard to go attack Watts. Not very conducive to confessions and rehabilitation, is it?
As a proponent of due process with no exception to the rule for high profile criminals, I am appalled at what the Colorado authorities did and it goes without saying, at the media’s gross indecency in the matter.
And I am perplexed by the Rzuceks who jumped on the Dr. Phil bandwagon to propagate hearsay and fake headlines before the transcripts could even be released; after the Colorado team told Watts that the family wanted to keep the content of the conversation private.
And using little Bella in the process is appalling; with headlines and promos edited in a way to let the viewers believe that she saw her mom being strangled.
What happened to this poor child is horrific enough without turning it over to Dr. Phil who made sure it would become a huge sensationalized Ka-Ching event. The man is not certified and has no credentials whatsoever to call Watts a malignant narcissist or to affix any labels on anyone. He is probably more qualified to play pin the donkey.
And who says this confession was the real one?
Phil exploits tragedies and had already lied about many aspects of the case on the air. He also loves to invite the likes of Nancy Disgrace on his show knowing full well that she has been sued countless times for lying about a case or an alleged culprit.
So why pick him for the big unverified reveal? Maybe because of the huge ratings and the fact that they were dissatisfied with the 20/20 interview that did not demonize Kessinger or did not spend enough time outlining the virtues of their daughter.
In spite of the fact that Chris confirmed that Kessinger had nothing to do with the crimes and that it is pretty clear to anyone who has studied the case, Phil brought it up anyway for more drama, and did not see fit to correct or question Sandra when she said that NK googled her daughter in 2017.
My big ‘Give Me a Break’ moment was when Sandy went as far as mentioning “all that porn.” Watts confessed, Shan’ann’s reputation is saved, time to stop and mourn in peace.
As heartbreaking as their situation is, and their pain palpable, that media appearance was troubling, to say the least.
The Veracity of Watts’ Statements
We have no way of checking the veracity of Chris’ statements about the death of his family. I suspect that he might not even understand himself the why of this tragedy and that his memory is probably spotty on many details. He could be making up scenarios in his own mind.
It appears that the Colorado team was eager to have him deny any kind of mitigating circumstances by asking him the questions directly and at times, suggesting answers.
The content of my blog about the case still stands and many of its conclusions or observations were confirmed by Watts even if sometimes in a roundabout way.
Chris is no doubt a strange bird; a man with a very high IQ, but the demeanor of a boy with an eerie passivity reminiscent of the classic movie Being There. In this case, the movie could be called Not Being There. A guy more than likely emotionally deranged since the tragedy, and unable to connect the dots of his life.
He had a moment of clarity when the red sea parted in July 2018, and the real Chris seemed to emerge for a while and be able to see things for what they were. But since his coping mechanism was so deficient and the ending became so apocalyptic, he ceased to exist and desisted.
The awakening was fleeting and has since vanished to give way to muddy waters. He has reverted to the old Chris who is under Shan’ann’s thumb and even misses her cooking. Almost like a depersonalization with a sense of detachment from oneself and one’s identity.
It is probably out of guilt and fear of blaming the victim, which is quite normal under these cruel circumstances.
Some details were confirmed by Watts that we can finally check off the list: He did not have affairs outside his marriage, and it is confirmed by the authorities. Nikki was the only one and he was in love. She had nothing to do with the crimes. Yes, she was a catalyst because he finally felt like he could come out of his shell and be himself with her, and his love for her blinded him and drove him away from his family.
The pregnancy was so fast that he was not ready and he was scared. The financial burden and the rift caused by his wife with his family since their wedding also reared its ugly head in North Carolina. The abscess was bursting.
Every time the investigators asked him a direct question that could have been a mitigating factor, he negated it but went on to explain exactly the contrary. Did he feel belittled by Shan’ann? Not really, but he goes on to explain that he was always nervous around her. Walked on egg shells. Emotional abuse can implants time bombs.
Did he like being in her videos? He hated it. Could he have refused to do them? She would have been mad. It was for the good of the family. So yes, he was belittled. We all saw it. And his parents deplored it.
Was it hard to live with the Rzuceks for 16 months? Not really, but Shan’ann was always upset. They had blow-ups, could not wake up Sandra early in the morning because there would be hell to pay. They had no intimacy. So yes, it was a pain.
When asked about his bankruptcy, he said that he never thought it could happen to him. He admitted that their wedding had been put on credit cards and they were carrying the debts. But he does not see the link with his mother Cindy trying to tell Shan’ann that the engagement ring was too expensive, and they did not need a big home they could not afford. So, yes, his mom was right and was trying to sound the alarm about their finances.
It was not about jealousy or bursting Shan’ann’s bubble or discourage her from dreaming big, it was about common sense and self-preservation. You can be ambitious and achieve your goals, but overspending and digging a financial hole for yourself is not the way to do it. Once again, where was Chris during all this? He had his head in the sand as usual.
He thought that his wife had mailed the money they owed for their house maintenance fees at the wrong address for a year? She was not paying it. They were due in court in August. How naive was he?
When asked about Thrive and the patches his parents have been trying to examine and blame partly for this debacle, he is nonchalant. But then, he goes on to say that with the Burn Duo, his Apple watch indicated that he was working out all the time when he was not. His heart rate was elevated. The guy was not sleeping on top of that.
He does not see that he was affected by it all. He was not himself he says. Really Chris? It is called a state of rage and psychosis.
‘‘Psychoses rank among the most severe mental illnesses. An international team of researchers under the guidance of the University of Bonn has now found out that after 24 hours of sleep deprivation in healthy patients, numerous symptoms were noted which are otherwise typically attributed to psychosis or schizophrenia.”
He wonders how Le-Vel can make money by being so generous. Really? $800 for a luxury car payment for $12,000 monthly sales is peanuts and a trap to make sure you reach the same monthly goal not to lose your car. And it was not tax-free Chris. Your wife was putting the money for daycare and not paying the mortgage.
Shan’ann had convinced him that because he once sold a Ford before paying it out, he did not know how to handle money. He had been on his own for 7 years before her and had impeccable credit. Wake up and smell the coffee Chris.
It is not only his family that needed to be saved, it was also Chris. He is obviously of very weak mind and his brain does not function as the average Joe. A type of high intelligence with an almost rain man behavior. Always helpful, patient and kind, devoted and preoccupied by others and suddenly a child killer. Something important had been missed about the circuitry of this man’s brain.
Shan’ann was in great need of help also. She was also taking Thrive, did not sleep much and in financial dire straight without being able to admit it. She probably could not tolerate Cindy and Jamie Watts because they were the voice of reason. If you were not part of her Magical Thinking Entourage, you were out.
The pregnancy was not going to be something she could handle. Her girls were always in daycare or she had help from family and friends. How was she going to manage a baby with her business? They were losing the house so who was going to move in with them this time to save the day?
Their lovely little girls were also in jeopardy because their mom used them as pawns and their father was losing it and failed to put his foot down to protect them. Instead, he had an affair. They should have come first.
The labels that the likes of Dr Phil try to plaster on Watts are not fitting at all. This is not a malignant guy who was roaming the earth looking to hurt someone. It is a domestic situation that turned tragic because nobody could see what was brewing underneath the veneer of these two parents.
When The Rzuceks say that their daughter had a perfect life and was extremely happy, I scratch my head. Of course, we tend to glorify the life of the departed, but did they read her posts about living and breathing negativity that affected her husband and the kids? Did they watch her videos?
Weren’t they there when she was constantly sick and impatient? Didn’t they not know she was living way above her means? That she was losing the house?
Was leading Chris by the nose and belittling him and his family on social media their notion of extreme happiness? No doubt, there was happiness, but their daughter was in trouble financially and her association with Le-Vel was leading her down a dangerous path.
What appeared to be a nightmare for the Watts’ grandparents was paradise to them? Someone had to have held the wrong side of that stick, and it was not their daughter.
The Watts’ family had become an Optical Illusion. A Social Media construct. A Thrive Ad. And their friends and family had become ‘Thrivers.’
You only have to watch the video of Shan’ann’s attempt at staging the perfect Christmas with her unwilling family to see that it was a House of Cards where Pretty Mommy living in the big house treated Daddy and the Girls like props and was not afraid to insult them on camera if they did not follow directions.
For this construct, I tend to blame MLM companies like Le-Vel who cater to vulnerable people like Shan’ann by enabling their grandiose dreams based on impossibilities; especially long term. They fill their head with mantras and use them as work puppets while encouraging them to present a perfect picture image, but for their own personal gain.
Shan’ann was close to the finish line. She was going to crash pretty soon, and Le-Vel was not going to be there to pick up the pieces.
On a more primal level, her own husband was trying to flee this MLM construct before it blew up in his face. He was the one who had to sustain this financial nightmare, and the pot of gold was not going to be at the end of the Thrive Rainbow. Only debts and financial ruins were on the horizon for the Watts.
He even told Kessinger that he was tired of being house poor and of seeing his wife squander his money.
Santa Watts seemed mortified by the reaction of the girls being forced to sit on his lap and at being part of the filming of this future Facebook post. He even mumbled so to Frank who was, as usual, glued to the ‘broadcast.’
I agree with a lady who commented on the video that with hindsight, when Chris knocks at the door dressed as Santa, it looks like the prelude to a Horror movie. I would call it the Rising of the Prop.
I am also mystified by the fact that practically everyone is glorifying Sandra, but so many are putting down Cindy Watts. Both mothers are victims of this tragedy and had faults and qualities.
Chris said in no uncertain terms that the disciplinarian in his family was his father who was also his best friend. When asked if his marriage was like his parents, he said no, it mirrored Frank and Sandra. So maybe they should leave Cindy alone for a change and stop trying to say that she was the architect of their demise.
The Colorado gang never even bothered talking to Cindy and Jamie Watts. If they were after the truth, why did they not get their insight? The conversations they had with Ronnie Watts were at the precinct and he had not witnessed any of the most recent incidents.
Apparently, Shan’ann had told Cindy that her mom and brother were bipolar. During the police interview, Frankie said that he had been depressed for years. Maybe they should have investigated the dynamics of both families to better understand what happened.
I wish that the changes happening within Chris could have been taken seriously instead of posted on Facebook as a joke by his wife. Oh look Chris is wearing Burn patches and he can’t stop!! How funny! I am not even sure that he understands himself what was going on. Thrive is great!
It seems that his highly criticized mistress is the only one who had the common sense to see that Chris did not sleep and was affected by something.
We can assume that his recent seething anger towards Shan’ann eventually turned into a monstrous blowout.
As I had mentioned in my blog, he probably went into self-preservation mode and took out the kids with her. Or maybe his anger was such that they were part of the collateral damage.
Since listening to his latest interview, I also came to the conclusion that not unlike his daughters who kind of detached from him because of their 5 weeks in NC with their mom and grandparents, he was also able to detach from his family. The month spent with Kessinger accomplished that. The difference is that it is normal for kids, but rare for adults to be able to do that.
He does not even seem to understand the rage that came over him. A lot of us kind of do. He describes dissociation. For same it is possession. To me, it is Thrive, lack of sleep and emotional duress that came crashing down on his less than normal mind.
I doubt many of the statements he came up with about the murder of his family.
The way he described having sex with Shan’ann does not mesh. He had turned her down for weeks. She tried to seduce him to no avail. He had 112 minutes conversation with Nikki that night and it felt exclusive.
It is hard to believe that he would have had sex with his wife unless it was to appease her so she would fall asleep, and he would not have to confront her about the separation before early morning when he could escape by going to work afterwards.
She was still wearing her G-string when they found her. What woman puts back her underwear after sex with her husband? I can only imagine how difficult it would have been for Chris to put it back, especially if she had soiled herself as he described. And there would have been no reason to do so.
The bra makes sense because many pregnant women wear them to bed. The autopsy revealed no semen and they were not using contraceptive because of the pregnancy. Plus, she must have been fuming about the credit card charge when she came home. Not in the mood for sex.
I think that Nickole Atkinson was eager to talk to her friend Shan’ann in the morning and suspected the worst because she knew what kind of mood her combative friend was in when she came home late, tired, deprived of sleep and feeling unwell.
She probably will never tell the truth about it. Shan’ann’s entire circle of friends rallied around her and were saying fuck Chris if he has a mistress, take the house, we will help you. She was trying to rekindle the relationship out of desperation, but was also furious and ready to rumble about the credit charge.
And they wonder why he could not just walk away.
On the other hand, he called it a test that triggered him. Was he testing their intimacy to see how it would feel because of his confusion and fear of the consequences of a divorce? If true, did the strangeness of it all push him to finally tell her he was not in love anymore and wanted a separation?
Did it trigger Shan’ann to order him to never come back to the house and that he would never see the kids again? Any attorney could have told them that Colorado is a no fault state for divorce. There is no way he would have lost the kids or that she could have taken the house, but as Chris said, they were not in their right mind; rage and desperation are strange bedfellows.
He interjected something that rang true to me: He was afraid that he would be locked out of the house that day and that the kids would not be there anymore. Considering that he probably had nowhere to go and it was his house and his children, it might have lit the long fuse he mentioned.
If you look at the back of the cabin of the truck, it seems impossible to have put the dead body of his wife on the floor board unless he lifted up the back seat She was too big and wide.
The kids could not have sat quietly on the back seat with their feet up resting on their dead mom. They had never ridden in an automobile without car seats before.
How could he have unloaded Shan’ann once at the field if he did not lift up the seat? It really makes no sense. The girls would have had to get out of the car for him to drag their mom out.
He would have had to start with the girls and once the back was empty, could have removed her more easily. It sounds so unrealistic and directly from the page of a cheap horror novel. On the other hand, it might support the crazed theory.
And the way he described them as alternately laying on each other does not really work with seat belts. He specifically said that Bella unbuckled herself when he went back to the car.
It is so hard to imagine that Bella, after witnessing the murder of her dear sister Cece, would have remained quiet and stayed in the truck while he disposed of her. It is like reading a Stephen King novel or the fake essay he wrote about spending the summer in Asia when he was in elementary school.
Even though the memory of Bella as well as her last words haunt him every day, he does not say a thing about Celeste. Only one alleged shadow of a child is seen on the video. I think it is quite possible that Celeste was smothered in her sleep at home. He could have gone to her room to do the deed and put her in the truck. According to the autopsy, she suffered a soft killing.
As I feared and mentioned in my blog, Bella was bound to get up and try to join her mom in bed. He allegedly told her that mom was not feeling well and they would take her to the doctor. In a sheet being dragged down the stairs?
The short video below could possibly show Chris picking up the shadow of a child.
In other videos, you clearly see him walk backward carrying a huge load. He also makes other trips but no signs of a live Cece. And I am not sure that the ‘shadow’ is Bella either. How can you trust a shadow? It could be his own reflection bending down to pick up something because he is facing the light.
I was the first one to throw shade at the ‘shadow videos’ created by the ridiculous guy I call the ‘Paypal Detective‘ whose thirst for donations is so strong that he also puts Kessinger in the driveway and spews one absurd theory after another, constantly contradicting himself and even inventing secret informants.
But after listening to Watts’ statement and really looking at the video without loop, it is difficult not to isolate this little shadow.
Maybe Chris heard about the shadows’ video from his family and it sank into his brain, and he has now rewritten the scenario, but knowing how despised he is already, one has to wonder why he would come up with such a gruesome new story and make matters worse for himself if not true?
Plus, he told the Colorado team that he had confessed the same story to his defense team in September; the video was not even public at the time.
The soft killings scenario that was widely accepted could have been his salvation so it tends to give credence to his new version of events, at least partly.
They called Celeste rampage. She was now a 3-year-old who could speak. We witnessed her tears and fits on video. She was not one to be silent or quiet. Can we even imagine Cece in the back of the truck not yelling and screaming or trying to pull at her mother? It would have been a real screaming bonanza.
Her own mother described the wild plane ride home from North Carolina with Cece as an experience not to be repeated.
And she could not have been sleepy in the truck because her mother told a friend that Cece was up very early because she was still on North Carolina time.
Maybe Chris has eliminated the memories from his mind or cannot get himself to talk about them, but he could not have had two quiet children in the back of a truck with a dead mom under their feet. No way mommy would ever sleep or be sick on the floor board with black plastic bags on her head and feet.
Kids their age would know it makes no sense. It is gruesome beyond words. I bet the bags were to cover his truck or the girls.
I tend to believe that if Bella was alive, she had to be in the front and the two other dead members of the family on the back seat. It might explain why she would have asked her dad if he will do to her what he did to Cece.
She fought back and was the soft and easily frightened one. I recall several videos when she would recoil saying ‘Save Me’while playing or watching a movie. She was such a sweet one, but in spite of her fearful nature, she tried to plead and resisted.
In my opinion, if awake, Celeste would have been even more difficult to handle.
What about Cece’s last words or reaction? Chris said that from the moment she was born, he had a special bond with her.
He read her stories at night and they roared like a tiger. Bella preferred to be tucked in by her mom. Bella reminded Cindy of Chris as a child and he remarked on it to a reporter by describing her as a nurturer. Why did he not mention Celeste’s last words or being haunted every day as he is with Bella?
One look at the video below shows us the bond he had with Celeste and emphasizes the mystery of what happened to the man.
According to Chris, Bella said a few times that it smelled in the truck. That is it. How do you explain that?
I doubt there was a long conversation or a big showdown with Shan’ann.
Maybe she told him she would fight for full custody, would not give him a divorce or told him Fuck you Fuck you and Fuck you and he jumped her.
The fact that he brings back the straddling several times might be because it really happened. That way, his wife could not have moved or fought back. It is the first time listening to him, that I felt his primal side. He kept repeating that he sat on his pregnant wife as if it was normal. Or as if he had a need to revisit the image.
Asked if she saw him strangle her, he recoiled at what she saw in his face. I can only imagine.
But who knows? He could have easily jumped her from the back because of the smudges we see on the pillow cases and sheet. He probably would not want to admit that he went after his wife while she slept because it makes him the coward of the Century. She was also buried face down.
In his mind, saying that he strangled her after an argument would not only remove the premeditation aspect, but it would make it the result of a slow burn. On the other hand, what he confided about his daughters is horrendous and cruel but would be considered premeditated; once again, go figure.
The way he described her face lower than usual in the pillow could indicate that he simply killed her in her sleep and that image stuck in his mind. The content of his statements is comprised of a patchwork of images he probably cannot forget and is rearranging into a narrative.
That is why the Colorado team should not have paid him this impromptu visit and accepted the veracity of his statements so easily. And they should definitely have abstained from making it public.
It is quite haunting to imagine him drag his wife downstairs with the thumping sound of her feet hitting the stairs. It is a horror story; especially knowing that Bella was up. And it confirms my suspicions that it may not have been premeditated. Who would plan such a mess?
The basement was full of medicine, he could have simply given the girls more Benadryl than usual to make sure they would not wake up.
He was rational enough to throw the blankets in a bin, but he left the sheet in the field with incriminating evidence on the oil batteries. He left her phone, purse and everything else at home.
But he thought of removing her ring that we probably saw him retrieve in the car when he entered the garage. He either lied about it to the investigators or there is a slim chance he does not remember.
I believe that he unloaded the song battery from Metallica because of his state of mind. It was not for Nikki as he told the Colorado gang.
Unless the documents were wrong about the time, it was downloaded at 10:10 AM on the 13th. I doubt that his focus was on explaining lyrics at that moment in time.
He does not seem to remember Celeste’s dress when he recalled unbuttoning it to the detectives.
His brain and state of mind were probably mush and containment even if he managed to look semi-normal.
God Is on His Side
It appears that Chris Watts can only serve one Master.
He turned his back on his parents and sister over the shenanigans of his wife Shan’ann. He turned on his own family for his new love Nikki. Only then, could he see all the dysfunctions of his married life. The same way he realized the method to the madness of his wife towards his family only when Thrive and a mistress allowed him to have more clarity; some kind of epiphany.
He appeared to live in one contained bubble at a time. Now that he is in prison, his Master is God. Not a bad choice, but certainly not the answer either.
He is now knee deep in religion and perceives looking at a woman with lustful intent a sin. He wishes he would have worked in the field and not at the office to avoid meeting Kessinger who has now become Jezebel. Gone is the awakening of being in a toxic relationship or coming into his own.
He now thinks that Shan’ann was praying when he strangled her. Thinking of Luke 20:34 ”Father, forgive them for the do not know what they are doing” was probably the last thing on her mind. She was probably scared and horrified.
”He is now dead to sin, alive to God. For sin shall no longer be his master, because he is not under the law, but under grace.”
Like many inmates before him, he memorized the bible and is a scripture dispenser. It gives him hope and I admire his desire to help others and find usefulness in his confinement, but I wish he could really look at his life and come to grips with reality and unleash his own personality.
His mistress is not the one who lied about getting a divorce, she did not put a leash around his neck. It was him who wanted out.
He seems unable to come to terms with the fact that he had his own feelings and desires.
Interestingly enough, when he talked to investigators, he stated about both Shan’ann and Nikki when it came to sex: She wanted what she wanted. As if he was there to answer their demands and had no involvement whatsoever. He seems to forget that he pursued both women, and in the case of Kessinger, we saw his cards and emails showing that he also wanted what he wanted.
He is the one who told Nikki after she found out about his wife pregnancy that it was not his child. When she told him in no uncertain terms that she did not believe him, he asked her if it would change things between them. He wrote to her that ‘he finally had the guts to approach her‘.
He saw a future with her and constantly professed his love and sent her flowers. Through religion, he is now conveniently blaming her and distancing himself from his own actions, and now relates to this Proverb:
With persuasive words she led him astray;
she seduced him with her smooth talk.
22 All at once he followed her
like an ox going to the slaughter,
like a deer stepping into a noose
23 till an arrow pierces his liver,
like a bird darting into a snare,
little knowing it will cost him his life.
24 Now then, my sons, listen to me;
pay attention to what I say.
25 Do not let your heart turn to her ways
or stray into her paths.
26 Many are the victims she has brought down;
her slain are a mighty throng.
27 Her house is a highway to the grave,
leading down to the chambers of death.
He is also identifying with the Book of Job 1:1 that is the story of a man confronted with the devil and going through many tragedies. Click to read it.
He cannot connect the dots and is now rewriting the narrative by injecting religion in it. I am surprised that he did not say that the devil made him do it. Sorry, it is Sandra who said that. Maybe it will come.
I wonder if Metallica will be banned from his thoughts also. Are they not Satanic? OK bad joke.
Religion is another Master Chris. Find yourself first. Face the music and then decide on a set of belief.
The Colorado gang screwed him over and endangered his future incarceration by poisoning the well even more. I can only imagine how his family felt when they heard his interview without prior notice, and saw his photo posted all over social media. It is not like anyone gives a damn about the Watts`feelings anyway. They have unjustifiably been attacked from day one.
The media, crime revelers and the authorities condemn the guy for his atrocious actions at that moment in time, and rightly so, but their reprehensible current actions officially earned them a membership card in the same Undesirable Club.