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Cindy Watts Extended Interview Transcript [PART 1]

00:00 – 03:14 of 21:56

CINDY:  I wake up every-every morning just crying, you know [voice breaks] thinking this is not gonna be…[paddles with her hand]…what’s gonna happen every single day…[with emotion] it’s just so hard to get through it. Mm…[voice breaks, sniffles] I just don’t know how to get through it. [Sighs].

REPORTER: Tell me about his childhood. Did he play sports, was he in scouts, what kinds of things…did…

CINDY: Yeah.

REPORTER:…did he do?

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"He was a perfect teenager…" #ChrisWatts

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CINDY: Yes, he played sports…he played sports from the time he was five years old, up until he was seventeen. And he was in basketball, he was in baseball, he was in football. And uh…loved NASCAR. He and his dad went to the NASCAR races all the time. Uhm…loved sports. Loved sports. And he had…he was a good kid. Uh…had…two best friends. And…that’s who he grew up with and still are friends with them today. And uh…there’s nothing…nothing that would have…predicted any of this [shakes head rapidly] could have ever happened.


CINDY: Nothing. Nothing in his childhood…at all. I would’ve never thought in a million years something like this could happen…to him…[licks lips] at all.

REPORTER: Yeah. You didn’t see things like him get into fights or…

CINDY: No. No fighting. He was…quiet…and he…got along with people. And he didn’t start anything. And he…was the perfect teenager to tell you the truth [laughs]. He did not even rebel. [Sniffs] He wanted to go to NASCAR-Tech. We…made that possible for him.

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REPORTER: What did he do after he finished school.

CINDY: He worked at the dealership as a service technician…and…was making good money, and…loved it. He…bought a uh…toolbox…and he started buying his tools…and uh…um…[shrugs] enjoyed it. He was [shakes head] doing well. 

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REPORTER: When and where did he meet Shan’ann?

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CINDY: They met and [looks down with sadness]…he liked her, she liked him but I don’t think [sneering] it was love at first sight [jolts head] or anything, [sighs] they took a little while and I guess got to know each other…and you know, dated. Um…it was always a little…a little strange…that [asymmetric curl of lip] she always said a lot of things about Chris in front of me [nods with conviction] that…I didn’t like.

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CINDY: Like this isn’t the kind of person I would date. Uh, he doesn’t know how to…do this…or he doesn’t know to do that [leans in one way, leans in the other to give sympathy and emphasis]. Um…he looks like a skater-boy. Look at his hair. Look at how much stuff he puts on his hair. It’s just…it was just on and on and on and I just got a bad feeling.

It’s worth breaking in here to note that Cindy’s experience with Shan’ann parallels that of Amanda Thayer. Shan’ann also told Amanda that she doubted her husband was having an affair because “he had no game”. And Amanda laughed when she repeated this during an interview. When she did, her husband Nick sitting beside her sighs uncomfortably at this compromising and undermining disclosure.

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If Shan’ann was undermining of him to his mother and their best friends [and on Facebook], it suggests she was probably very undermining [rightly or wrongly] to him directly.

When Cindy quotes Shan’ann saying this isn’t the kind of person I would date I don’t think it was as much a comment on Chris Watts’ personality, temperament or looks, but his social status. Shan’ann’s first husband, Leonard T. King, was an attorney. That’s quite a status slide – from legal professional to mechanic, and in that sense then, in the social status sense, Shan’ann seemed to think she was better than he was, or that he wasn’t good enough for her.

Maybe she was right. But maybe if she didn’t think that things may have turned out differently. Maybe.

When this class divide forms the backdrop to a relationship, it can be fatally undermining, like someone putting you in a cage. And we know even before Watts met Shan’ann, all his school and college buddies described him as a very diligent, hard-working type. It appears that he brought this same work ethic into the marriage, and into his child-raising, and it was his efforts that paid the bills. But one has a sense – somehow – that no matter what he did it was never going to be good enough. It wasn’t going to get them out of their colossal debt situation, but more significantly, how it felt to him was nothing he did was ever going to be good enough in her spiel. And that I think was the source of his rage, against her, then against the pregnancy, and then while babysitting all weekend, against his entire family.

Source:, November 15, 2018


  1. Eleni Palmos

    Many American women – and especially young ones – have mouths like wind-up toys. It starts and keeps going. Add into the mix, the American (mistaken) attitude that every opinion matters, and it gets poisonous. Life does not accept every opinion.

    Chris was so passive that Shannan was trying to verbally provoke him into action. He retreated instead. And the one time it sprang into action, well…

    I am in NY and there is many a mechanic that is much richer than a student-loan-burdened attorney. Not every lawyer joins a shiny firm and makes big bucks.

    Delusion everywhere.

    • nickvdl

      It might be delusional, but the point isn’t whether you think mechanics make better husbands than lawyers, but what Shan’ann thought.

      • Eleni Palmos

        Shannan had some delusions that are common to many people. The fixation on a certain lifestyle, a certain type of spouse, a certain image to project to others. Their case is so fascinating because their situation is so common.

  2. Hugh Schreiber

    IMHO, Chris and Shan’ann were both into over spending and not caring about it. He got Metallica tickets and immediately asked where’s my t-shirt. They both wore fit-bit watches and wanted every new gadget on the market.
    Unfortunately, their second round of high spree spending (after the first bankruptcy) caught up to them way too soon before they could do another bankruptcy to make all the over spending just go away.
    They both knew before she went to North Carolina that the damn was about to burst. She even rented a house there. It’s so sad that she went back to Colorado. If she had just hired a moving company to pack her belongings and bring them to NC everybody would still be alive and there would never have been a story to follow…but Nick, your exceptional skills and effort in following this case are truly appreciated. Cindy Watts coming into the foreground, almost after the fact, reveal to us that the apple does not fall far from the tree.

    • nickvdl

      You make an excellent point Hugh about running away from their debts. Get away with that long enough and you can start kidding yourself that the laws of the universe simply don’t apply to you.

    • LaraLeon

      I think she was the big spender. She wanted to have a similar house she had before with her first husband, she always had her nails done, giving away lots of prizes for her Thrive customers, having them in a private day care. I think he just went along with it. He was still driving the same truck, his clothes were nothing fancy, etc. His friend said when he was young that he didnt even want to go out, just stay home and study. That does not strike me as somebody who would like to go out and spend all this money, I think he just went along because he felt he couldn’t disagree with her. Remember his mom’s interview saying he was always nervous, anxious around her? I think he just had to agree with everything. Also, I dont know if its true but somebody commented that in his facebook he posted he was upset for having to put 18K in her thrive business, so I am sure this was taking a toll on the marriage

  3. Tammy

    I did note an undermining behavior in all the videos. Some were actually sad to watch. Sometimes, it’s the little things that are said that can turn into something huge. Some people that seem quiet and calm are what my mother always called “stamp collectors “. Of course, I don’t think this case is only about snarky remarks and status; maybe a contributing factor along with NPD.

    Think you for your posts. I enjoy reading your insight.

  4. LaraLeon

    Look at this video, in minute 1:04 she says something and he stops what he is doing but we can see in his face that this criticism was getting really old because it was constant. He couldn’t do anything right in her eyes

  5. LaraLeon

    In minute 5:13 he rolls his eyes. Another example of getting tired of everything she says because it is usually to bark orders, criticize him or refute anything he says or does. Yes, we can imagine rage building inside of him. Not justifiable for murder of course, but he should have divorced her

    • Karen

      I think you and I are seeing two different things on these videos

  6. LaraLeon

    8:03 Talking about Bella being shy like CW but she says she is changing that, because she is showing her daughter how to be confident. She is saying that with CW next to her. I am sure he could hear it. All this talk inside was for him to hear it, like when she says nobody is going to stop her. So he was not only good enough for her for not providing enough but also lower for being shy and with low self esteem,

  7. LaraLeon

    1:20 She criticizes him and he tries to explain: “what? I was just..” He couldn’t do anything on her eyes. Notice she starts filming without him knowing. When she notices the camera he starts performing more, dancing but she criticizes him for that. Even feeding the child, cleaning the kitchen, he still was criticized. Nothing was good enough for her. He was always below for her. Too bad they got married. This was a toxic relationship. For a man to be with her he would have to be a person that doesnt pup up with that kind of behavior. Unfortunately for her she though he did until he didnt 🙁

  8. Diana

    Having dealt with a less than pleasant MIL myself, I’ll reserve judgement of Cindy Watts since I can’t be objective.

    On Shan’ann perhaps thinking Chris was beneath her as her first husband was an attorney…..Lets flip the script on people picking above or beneath what they think they deserve. Lets look at Chris. Maybe Chris really did have “game” all along. The mistress, with all that fancy learnin’ and her daddy being the boss-man, was an even higher step-up than Shan’ann. I find it interesting that someone supposedly with no confidence would go to his bosses daughter and introduce himself with obviously more than friendship on his mind.

    • LaraLeon

      I think he changed, even SW said that. He was more outgoing and think that has to do with him losing weight and looking better. Also, when he wanted to date it seems that he could get over his shyness. When he wanted to date SW he contacted her many times on Facebook. So he could have “game” when he wanted. Yes, the mistress is a step-up from SW. She was educated and wealthier. In a way it could be part of the subconscious choice of getting back at her having a step-up. Also, it crossed my mind that in the beginning he might have felt that SW was better off as she portrayed herself as an independent woman and had money coming from her divorce settlement. I think he was attracted to that successful, independent, wealthy SW. Not the stay at home mom, that is draining the bank account and taking them to bankruptcy

    • nickvdl

      Now you’re talkin’.

  9. Diana

    LaraLeon exactly! Him being attracted to the other SW was my point. He ALWAYS had game in other words. I think SW obviously underestimated him in more ways than one. Chris’s mom says she never saw anything to indicate he would turn out killing anyone, I don’t doubt that. But, she seems to be aware of his shyness in his younger years, maybe he had a brooding side to him. I think Chris fooled a lot of people in a lot of ways. Unfortunately it cost Shan’ann her life. Maybe Shan’ann was a trigger, maybe the mistress was, maybe a new pregnancy or maybe even his rowdy daughter that he was left home with too many times triggered the murders, but I don’t think anyone truly knew the real Chris. Chris was was only looking out for Chris. I think he has a very high opinion of himself all along.

    • nickvdl

      Chris was was only looking out for Chris.>>>Is that what you see in so many of those videos of him singing, playing, feeding, reading and exercising with his children?

  10. Georgia

    When the interviewer asks her where and when they met, she answers neither, and proceeds to diss Shan’ann.

  11. Karen

    Shan’ann also told Amanda that she doubted her husband was having an affair because “he had no game”. And Amanda laughed when she repeated this during an interview.

    The fact that Amanda laughed when telling this to the reporter leads me to believe that when Shan’ann said it to Amanda they both laughed

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