“Since you’ve been on the news, I think of you almost every day.” It was with these words, filled with disturbing romanticism, that Candace, 39, addressed the author of familicide, Chris Watts. Like her, more than ten of them have sent fiery missives to the 35-year-old man currently incarcerated in Wisconsin. A figure that has continued to grow since the release in September of the documentary retracing its history, American Murder: The Family Next Door, on Netflix.
His crime is to have murdered in cold blood his pregnant wife, Shanann, and his two daughters, Bella, 4, and Celeste, 3. “He has received letters from women who want to bond romantically with him,” a relative of the killer confirmed to People magazine. Believe it or not, they have compassion for him. ” For Candace, as for the others, there is no doubt: Chris is not as bad as his crime suggests. “In my heart, you are a good man,” said the Colorado resident. And a 35-year-old Australian woman added: “You honestly have one of the nicest faces I’ve ever seen.” An angel-faced killer.
He stored his wife’s body next to his sleeping daughters crammed into the back of the car
On November 6, 2018, however, the thirty-something pleaded guilty to the triple murder of his family. A decision that will allow him to avoid the death penalty, but not life imprisonment. For this seemingly uneventful family from a small town in Colorado, life changed on August 13, 2018. In Watts’ parental bedroom, an argument broke out. Shanann is convinced that her husband is cheating on her. After weeks of silence, Chris confesses. A confession to which is added another: he no longer loves her anymore. “You will never see your children again”, would have shouted the thirty-something. According to the confidences of the father of the family, it is at this moment that he would have started to tighten the neck of his wife.
“Every week that I thought about killing her, and now I was faced with it,” the murderer later confessed to the writer Cheryln Cadle, author of the book Letters from Christopher. With his wife’s cold body and half-asleep daughters crammed into the backseat, Chris Watts then allegedly drove towards an oil field owned by his employer. “It’s a forty-five minute drive. Couldn’t I … save my daughters? Why didn’t I do anything?”, Detailed the thirty-something to investigators.
Chris fans accuse Shanann: “She pushed him to the limit, she drove him crazy.”
Once relieved of the remains of his wife, the father would then have attacked his children. First to her younger sister, suffocated by the blanket she had taken away. Then, to his eldest. “Of the three, Bella was the only one who struggled. I will hear her sweet little voice for the rest of my life, saying, ‘Daddy, no.’ She might not have understood death, but she knew I was killing her. ” A terrible end for a story that had started well …
It was in 2010 that Shanann, who had just been diagnosed with lupus, met the one who would become her executioner. “It was the most difficult time of my life, she recalled on Facebook. And then I met Chris.” Mad about each other, the lovers say yes two years later. “She’s been looking for a good guy all her life. I couldn’t ask for better,” congratulated Frankie, the brother of the bride, very moved during the ceremony. And for good reason: for many, Shanann and Chris looked like a model couple. She, head of the family, sociable and smiling. He, attentive, discreet and always ready to help his beloved.
From inside, however, the little cloud turned to a storm. “Shanann pushed him over the edge, fans of the killer say. She drove him crazy.” More and more distant with his wife whom he finds too authoritarian, Chris finds tenderness in the arms of a colleague, Nichol Kessinger. “Without Nikki, would I have known that our relationship wasn’t working? I don’t think so,” he told police. A hope of a new start that would have pushed the unfaithful man to take action, according to the investigators.
The home of the Watts has become the destination of macabre tourism
Two years after the fact, this tragedy continues to make the headlines in the United States. In addition to Chris’s growing list of admirers, the house of drama has also become a place of fascination. The neighbors of this decimated family explained that the Watts’ house had become the destination of macabre tourism. This very house where Shanann had confided, sometime before his death, that Chris was “the best thing that ever happened to him” in life. It was the worst.
Chris Watts with his wife Shanann and their daughters, Bella and Celeste © FACEBOOK SHANANN WATTS