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(Joshua Polson/The Greeley Tribune via AP, Pool, file)

DENVER (AP) — A Colorado man told police that he killed his pregnant wife in “a rage” when he discovered she had strangled their two daughters after he sought a separation, according to an arrest affidavit released on Monday shortly after prosecutors charged the man with his family’s murders.

According to the affidavit, Christopher Watts told his wife, Shanann, that he wanted to separate when she returned from a business trip early on the morning of Aug. 13.

Watts told police that he walked downstairs after the conversation.

When he returned to the couple’s bedroom, Watts said he checked a baby monitor on Shanann’s nightstand and saw his wife strangling their youngest daughter while their oldest daughter sprawled on her bed, looking blue.

Watts, 33, said he then “went into a rage” and strangled his wife.

He told police that he loaded all three bodies into his work truck, and then he buried his wife at an oil work site and dumped the remains of 4-year-old Bella and 3-year-old Celeste inside oil tanks.

A judge on Friday denied a request by defense lawyer James Merson to require the coroner to collect DNA from the necks of the children.

Autopsies have been completed but not released.

The arrest affidavit was sealed at prosecutors’ request until Monday. After nine felony charges were filed against Watts, a judge granted prosecutors’ request to unseal it.

Watts faces three first-degree murder charges, two counts of murdering a child, one count of unlawful termination of a pregnancy and three counts of tampering with a deceased human body.

The charges come a week after a friend reported Shanann Watts, 34, and the girls missing.

Before his arrest last week, Christopher Watts lamented in interviews with local television stations about missing his wife and daughters. He spoke in front of their home in Frederick, a small town on the grassy plains north of Denver where fast-growing subdivisions intermingle with drilling rigs and oil wells.

The bodies were found on property owned by Anadarko Petroleum, one of Colorado’s largest oil and gas drillers, where Watts had worked as an operator. Court documents filed by Merson said the girls had been submerged in crude oil for four days.

The affidavit says Watts gave police an aerial photograph of the area and identified three areas where he placed the bodies. Investigators used a drone to search the area and spotted a bed sheet that matched other linens found in the family home, along with fresh dirt.

Watts is being held without bail and will next appear in court Tuesday.

Family and friends said they were shocked by the slayings, saying the family seemed happy and Christopher Watts appeared to be a good father. The social media accounts for Shanann Watts, who was from North Carolina, are filled with photos of the family smiling and playing and posts praising her husband and expressing excitement about the couple expecting their third child.

But a June 2015 bankruptcy filing captured a picture of a family dealing with financial strain.

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9 thoughts on “Colorado Man Says He Killed Wife After She Killed Daughters

  1. Linda Lee on said:

    So instead of calling 911 and trying to give your daughters CPR, you dispose of the bodies. I hope there is death penalty on the table for this sick SOB

  2. The why did you bury the bodies fool? Better yet, call the police if she did kill the girls 9which I do not believe) and let her be going to prison.

  3. This is one of the craziest things I have ever heard of in my lifetime. He needs to be put under the jail for this foolishness. Why would you murder your family? Your wife is pregnant and you murder her, the baby that is not borne yet and your little girls. This is some straight up SICK STUFF. This is so SAD!

  4. What a cowardly, spineless, maniacle, depraved, worthless POS… (did I leave anything out?!) It probably doesn’t even phase him that he would have had a son. I hope he can never again in this lifetime close his eyes and not see his wife, daughters and hear the cries of his unborn child.

  5. tedgravely on said:

    He takes coward to a whole different level. This murdering fool is in the Exosphere. I guess since Susan Smith’s defense of blaming a black man didn’t work out well for her, blame your dead wife. White on White Crime – savages. He might get away with the lie. Affluenza worked. Let’s see; mental health issues, not a thug, he had a lot of pressure, he comes from a fine, very fine family, and he is young and deserves to start over. Truth isn’t truth (whatever that means). The keyboard coon and klansmen solution to this murder – focus on Chicago. Yep that about covers it. Oh and check that murdering coward’s birth certificate. He’s not a day under 45.

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