Chris Watts case: Shanann Watts texted friend her suspicions on husband, days before he strangled her to death
Newly released investigative documents include police reports, transcripts of interviews, and other material that are related to the high-profile case of the Watts family murders
Less than a week before Chris Watts, Shanann's husband of almost six years, strangled her to death in their Frederick, Colorado, home, the pregnant 34-year-old reportedly shared her suspicions with a friend of hers. According to investigative documents that have been released by multiple local media outlets, she texted her friend early on August 7: "He has changed. I don’t know who he is." The documents include police reports, transcripts of interviews, and other material that are related to the high-profile case of the Watts family murders.
The documents, which have been analyzed in detail by TV stations such as KDVR, show the underlying narrative of the murders which were already laid out by authorities in Colorado. This was that 33-year-old Chris Watts suddenly grew very distant from his family and was infatuated with a "new love", until he finally couldn't figure out a way to keep them all in his life and chose his new lover over his pregnant wife and two young daughters, PEOPLE reported.
According to KDVR, Shanann explained in the heartbreaking text to her friend: "He hasn’t touched me all week, kissed me, talked to me except for when I’m trying to figure out what is wrong. We’ve never had a problem in our relationship like this. No joke. NEVER. THIS IS TOTAL LEFT FIELD. I just want to cry."
Her friend then tries to calm her down but it doesn't work. Shanann was so worried about the state of her marriage to her husband and where it was heading that she seemed to have lost all confidence in the once strong bond the couple had. The distraught woman texted: "What if he really doesn’t love me anymore?!" Speaking about an incident that happened later on August 7, she texted that "he said we are not compatible anymore! He refused to hug me after he said he will try to 'work' it out! Said he thought another baby would fix his feelings. Said, he refused couples counseling."
Shanann wrote to her friend that Chris "said he’s not sitting on no damn couch saying what he just said to me to no stranger." The expectant mother was going to have a son whom she wanted to name Nico. She texted her friend: "This baby in my belly deserves his full love." Her friend then asked her to go through her husband's phone to check for any signs of infidelity. Shanann then wrote: "Only thing I can think of even though I don’t think he has it in him is another girl."
The newly released documents revealed that just a few weeks before, she had texted her husband when she was in North Carolina visiting her family with the couple's two daughters Bella and Celeste.
Shanann texted Chris: "l realized during this trip what’s missing in our relationship! lt's only one-way emotions and feelings. I can’t come back like this. I need you to meet me halfway. You don’t consider others at all, nor think about others feelings."
Chris, however, was already involved in an affair. He met a co-worker at a work party and she believed him when he said that he was getting a divorce from Shanann when their affair began. The prosecutors said his motive for the murders was a selfish desire for a "fresh start". Shanann returned from a work trip on August 13 early morning and it is believed that this is when the murders occurred.
According to prosecutors, the entire story of what happened that morning may never be known but Chris told them that he and his wife had an "emotional conversation". Soon after that, it is believed, he strangled her with his bare hands. He also smothered Bella and Celeste, with Bella having fought back for her life, and disposed their bodies at an oil work site.
Shanann's sudden disappearance immediately looked suspicious to her friend who called authorities a little after lunch on the same day that the mother and the children were believed to have been murdered.
Just days after authorities first spoke to Chris, he was in jail. He pleaded guilty at his charging hearing in order to avoid capital punishment and received three consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole.
We may never know the full story of how the pregnant mother and children died that day. Weld County District Attorney Michael Rourke said previously: "[Shan’ann’s family] were of the opinion that he would never be able to give us a full version — just because of who he is — he would never tell us the truth." He spoke to the reporters after the triple murderer's sentencing and said: "I don’t think that there is ever going to be a satisfactory answer for anyone."