True Crime Analysis, Breakthroughs, Insights & Discussions Hosted by Bestselling Author Nick van der Leek

Bella and Ceecee: Murdered in their Beds?

At 1:04 in the clip below, CNN’s breezy narrator describes Watts murdering Bella in her bedroom. Really? Is that where Bella was murdered?

Let’s be clear, it’s been the contention of TCRS from the start that no one was murdered in their beds. Not Shan’ann, not Bella and not Ceecee. We’ve gone to some trouble thus far to discuss the ground zero of Shan’ann’s murder. Unlike the kids, Shan’ann’s shoes by the front door, the suitcase by the stairs, the Vivint alert and the doorbell camera footage, all provide a fairly clear glimpse of the final location of the 34-year-old saleswoman on Monday night.

Whether we postulate that Shan’ann was murdered immediately upon entering the home [at 01:48] or hours later [no later than 05:18], we still have a window of a handful of hours in which to definitively say Shan’ann was killed.

We don’t have anywhere near the same certainty about the children. The last time they were seen alive was Sunday afternoon/early evening. We’re not even clear about exactly when they were last seen, which is bizarre in itself.

The window of the children’s murders is anywhere from approximately 17:00 [depending on exactly when Bella FaceTimed with her grandfather] to roughly 05:00 the next morning. That’s roughly twelve hours of uncertainty about when. It’s also a very long period to be uncertain about where.

Did they have dinner? It appears Bella was snacking while she FaceTimed. It also appeared [again, strangely] that the kids swapped their snacks. Did they have dinner or snacks?

Fullscreen capture 20190210 123906

Were they bathed? [Watts claimed he gave his girls a shower and then put them in bed, Discovery Documents, page 584].

Fullscreen capture 20190210 122320

Did they watch tv before bed? Did they ever go to bed?

I recently discussed this aspect with a fellow true crime addict, and a new thought surfaced that I hadn’t considered before. While many of you may disagree with the details and the fineprint, try to take this in as a global hypothesis. It’s simply an idea or theory that came up during a discussion. The idea is to test, evaluate and explore some of the thoughts and ideas in it, and see where that might take us.


The broad pattern of the murder and disposal was that it was a carefully premeditated attempt to blend a triple murder within Watts’ normal, everyday schedule. So when the rest of the suburb is asleep, he’s not, but if he’s up earlier or goes to bed later than usual [or the kids meet their death at bedtime] who is to know?

He wakes up pretty much on schedule, and leaves to work pretty much on schedule, and goes to work roughly corresponding to where work needs him. From an outsider’s perspective there is minimal deviation. It’s just Mr Watts heading out on a Monday morning as usual.

What impression is Watts working at here? Watts is trying to achieve plausible deniability. When his family disappears where was he?

I was just going to work…

I was at work…

I was out near Roggen all day…

I was busy…

Fullscreen capture 20190210 131931

Watts also used his work, indirectly, as a cover for where he was during the Rockies game [when he had dinner with Kessinger]. He said he was at a work function with colleagues.

Clearly the neighbor picked up that it wasn’t normal for Watts to back his truck into the garage, and his coworkers at Anadarko said it was odd for Watts to be calling on a Sunday, or to be heading out to a well site straight from home on a Monday.

But Watts was probably counting on folks being less savvy about silly little details like that. Besides, who would really notice his truck at that time of the morning, and if they did, who would care? And if they did care, he was just loading tools, so what? What other choice did he have? Load up the Lexus? And drive where? For what? And how did he explain that?

If the cops did suspect him the GPS data wouldn’t be of much use because he’d visited a number of wells that day, and the next. What, were they gonna search every well? And if he played it cool, they wouldn’t suspect him to begin with.

Whatever the details of his plan, it seems Watts felt he could bury the crime inside plausible deniability. Getting up, going to work, and acting nonchalant.

If we take this psychology and apply it to the crime scene, and the question about where the children were murdered, a new scenario unfolds. 

And the scenario is this:

When Shan’ann arrives home the children are – plausibly enough – in their beds. They’re not asleep though, they’re dead, but Shan’ann won’t know that. She’ll simply quietly look in, see them lying there and presto – Watts has plausible deniability in plain sight with them.

I realize this scenario is at odds with the idea of Shan’ann not going upstairs at all, but let’s just explore it a little further, for argument’s sake. If the children were murdered early in the evening, and placed in their beds, by 02:00, roughly six hours after death, their bodies would likely be stiff and pungent. If Shan’ann entered the room, and approached them, or kissed them, there was a good chance she might notice their palor, or smell something. So perhaps Watts murders the children late at night, shortly after finding out Shan’ann’s flight would be delayed.

In this scenario when Shan’ann arrives the children are in bed, and less blue, stiff and smelly. Alternatively, Watts could commit the crimes within half an hour, or minutes before Shan’ann arrives home. In this scenario the children are asleep in bed when they are killed, and then left where they are. Once again, it’s plausible deniability. At face value, they appear to be asleep but actually they’re not.

In this scenario, Shan’ann arrives home and possibly enters their bedrooms. She somehow realizes something is wrong. They’re not breathing, and their skin is cool or cold to the touch. Perhaps Shan’ann notices they’re blue. Instead of strangling her own children, Shan’ann tries to resuscitate them. Thus distracted, Watts then attacks her from behind and murders her. Perhaps his original plan was to kill her in her sleep as well, but her finding the kids dead prematurely forces him to abandon his plan.

Taking the scenario further, Nichol Kessinger noted that Watts felt the children’s blankets were smelly in their conversation Monday night. This suggests the children were dead in their beds, which left a lingering odor. By Monday night Watts felt a sense of urgency to wash these blankets.

Fullscreen capture 20190204 121721

Watts also disposed on blankets, apparently, somewhere between CERVI 319 and the house on Saratoga Trail. So the blankets appear to be virtually the only items missing in this case. This suggests that the blankets have something to do with the crime. Either they were wrapped in them for transportation, or they died in them, and the blankets were removed as part of the cover up.

Fullscreen capture 20190204 121822

There also appears to be some reinforcement to this from the dog handler, who picked up some interest in an area below Bella’s bed.

Fullscreen capture 20190210 121444Fullscreen capture 20190210 121500

Watts also indirectly references this psychology of death in the bed by referring to Shan’ann wanting to wash the airport out of her sheets, and off herself.

Fullscreen capture 20181216 025421Fullscreen capture 20190210 121157Fullscreen capture 20190210 122148Fullscreen capture 20190210 122207Fullscreen capture 20190210 123749Fullscreen capture 20190210 123840Fullscreen capture 20190210 124008Fullscreen capture 20181129 124705Fullscreen capture 20181208 170147Fullscreen capture 20181208 180519


Fullscreen capture 20181211 075904Fullscreen capture 20181211 081120Fullscreen capture 20181213 161600Fullscreen capture 20181213 161728Fullscreen capture 20181213 161734Fullscreen capture 20181213 161736Fullscreen capture 20181213 161741Fullscreen capture 20181213 161808Fullscreen capture 20181214 175921Fullscreen capture 20181214 175923Fullscreen capture 20181214 175926Fullscreen capture 20181214 175929Fullscreen capture 20181214 175932Fullscreen capture 20181214 175947 - CopyFullscreen capture 20181214 175951

Fullscreen capture 20190210 125355

Fullscreen capture 20190210 125519Fullscreen capture 20190210 125656

Fullscreen capture 20190210 125836Fullscreen capture 20190210 130020Fullscreen capture 20190210 130413Fullscreen capture 20190210 130422Fullscreen capture 20190210 130433Fullscreen capture 20190210 130505Fullscreen capture 20190210 130548Fullscreen capture 20190210 130608Fullscreen capture 20190210 130625Fullscreen capture 20190210 131158Fullscreen capture 20190210 131212Fullscreen capture 20190210 131224Fullscreen capture 20190210 131245Fullscreen capture 20190210 131311

Although the above scenario is credible in some ways, it’s not the position of TCRS, which remains that none of the murders were committed in any of the bedrooms upstairs.



  1. Alyson Marie Rogers

    I’m not sure how what I am about to tell you plays into any of your very interesting post, but thought I would share anyway. 15 years ago, I had the dreadful experience of finding my mother passed away. It is difficult for me to relay the facts, but in the interests of trying to find out something about the children’s passing I thought I would offer them. I discovered her about 2pm ish on the Friday, and the coroner thought she passed away about 5-6pm the previous night, Thursday. Thankfully for me, the scene was not as horrific a one may imagine if you have never found someone dead. She was sitting in her armchair. There was no smell at all, and her face was not blue. There was discolouration and of course, my poor Mum was stone cold, and her body though stiff, did not look like it was. The only time a smell came through was when the paramedics moved her to see if there was any chance of resuscitation ( which I knew from seeing her was pointless but it goes to Coder’s comment that even when someone is visibly gone, you try). Unless Sha’nann touched the children it may have appeared that they were sleeping- even hours later – based on my terrible experience. I suppose it would depend on the manner of death (my Mum passed through a heart issue, they said within 30 seconds, would not have felt much at all), and then I guess the room temperature (she had a floor heater, and it was a warm room) as to what you would see when someone dies. Anyway, I appreciate your site – it’s great for people like me passionate about true crime. I never envisaged though, that I would write my personal story in relation to one. Best regards.

    • nickvdl

      Thanks for sharing this tragic experience Alyson. Very few of us have firsthand experiences with dead people.

      • Alyson Marie Rogers

        Thank you Nick. Obviously the terrible experience, facts, sights, smells, stay with me until this day. I wondered if there was an insight here because I discovered my mother within 24hrs of her passing – about 20-21 hours , as to what Sha’nann may have seen regarding her poor children. If CW killed them within 5,6,7 hours before, maybe not much, if she only opened the bedroom door and looked in. Certainly no pungent smell – as one who has experienced this I can confirm that it is not always the case.

        • nickvdl

          It’s a useful thought experiment, but in my opinion, it doesn’t apply in this case.

    • Clean Queen

      Alyson – I want to thank you for sharing such a personal story. I’m sorry you had to experience finding your mother like that, and I am sorry for your loss.
      I think most people (me included) don’t have much (if any) experience finding someone deceased. This is completely different than say a viewing or wake at a funeral home (typically no touching, smells are masked, etc). With that said, testimony such as yours is quite helpful in gaining a better understanding of this case.

    • Ralph Oscar

      Thank you for sharing that, Alyson. That addresses a question I asked a day or two ago – would someone dead only a few hours have a noticeable carrion smell? Apparently not. I’m very sorry about your mother…

      • nickvdl

        Actually a body can begin to smell very soon after death, depending on the circumstances. In some cases the cadaver will quickly discharge urine and excrement, as was the case in the JonBenet Ramsey and Susan Rhode cases. The internal mechanisms of the body immediately shut down, including the digestive tract.
        In the Madeleine McCann case, cadaver traces were found in late August, four months after her disappearance in early May.
        The Casey Anthony case is an extreme example of just how much odor even a small corpse can give off if kept in a sealed, warm environment such as the trunk of a car.
        Typically in these cases, the last person to know the victim is dead is the prime suspect, who suddenly seems to lose their sense of smell.

      • Ralph Oscar

        Thanks, Nick. If I haven’t mentioned it recently, I just love your site!

  2. Sylvester

    Okay – it is plausible that the trap Watts set was to have the girls be dead in their beds so that when Shan’ann went upstairs and changed into her nightgown, did her bedtime routine, she would look in on them, and actually go to them, and see that they were cold and blue and stiff – then try and resuscitate CeCe, etc. But where was he? If he’s seeing all of this on the baby monitor he’s downstairs and hears a noise and runs back upstairs and sees it, or if he killed them earlier and laid a trap by placing them in their beds so that she will find them lifeless when she returns home he’s now in the bedroom. He’s all over the place. One of his inconsistencies is in what he says. A. He says he (after viewing Shan’ann in CeCe’s room on the baby monitor) “went in to a blind rage and did the same thing to Shan’ann.” What is the “same thing?” How would he know, in the dark, that she strangled both girls so that he would have to do the same thing to her? For all he knows she smothered one girl, or hit one girl with a blunt object. How would he know it’s the “same thing.” and B. He says he then takes the time I would presume, as it would take time, to put Shan’ann “back into their bed” – and then saw Bella on the baby monitor and “just knew.” That makes 0 sense. How would he “just know.” Maybe Bella was spared – and she was just asleep. In any event, he took the time to carry Shan’ann back to bed, but he didn’t take the time to call 911, or try to resuscitate CeCe, or check to make sure Bella was okay.

    I’ll leave someone else to address the smelly sheets, but when someone commits a crime (if they stick around the crime scene or live in it) there is usually an attempt to clean, wash, and erase. It’s their guilt that they are trying to erase, and it’s the smell of murder they are trying to get off their conscience. If the dog hit under Bella’s bed but not in CeCe’s room, then either something was placed under Bella’s bed or…and I’ll leave that to someone else.

    • nickvdl

      He’s in bed the whole time. Asleep.

  3. Clean Queen

    Nick, extremely interesting theory here. I thought for a while it would be possible Watts put the kids in their beds after they were dead so they would appear that they were sleeping. Although I never really thought about the details surrounding that hypothetical act. This is good food for thought. After all, why would he bother stripping the girls’ beds if they had never been in them? I suppose he could have done it to make it appear as though he was simply washing all the sheets since he had to strip the sheets from the master bed. But with NK mentioning the “smelly sheets”, it seems as though the reason for stripping their beds was more sinister.
    What really got my mind turning was the idea that he put the kids back in their beds for the sake of plausible deniability, in case SW went to check on them upon her arrival. Chris being forced to act prematurely to his plan to and ambush her from behind in the bedroom would make sense. I know a lot of times there are half truths to lies, and he had a lot to say about something going down in the girls’ bedrooms in his confession.
    I really enjoy hearing new ideas about this case. I appreciate the fact that you’re able to share an idea that may contradict TCRS’s general hypothesis. At the very least, it makes for fascinating conversation.

    • nickvdl

      Watts claims he put Shan’ann back in her bed after killing her – in his confession. Scroll to the screengrabs of discovery at the very end of the post. So the scenario is there.

      • Ralph Oscar

        So *someone* (possibly plural) is being put “back in bed” after being murdered – since CW seems to weave facts into his liarpants scenarios, perhaps he was alluding to putting the girls “back in bed”. If he drugged them while they were watching TV and finished them off there (as someone else suggested), and then moved them to the beds afterward, that might fit. What did he do with Shan’Ann after strangling her? “Wrapped her in a sheet, dragged her down the stairs, and then loaded her into my truck.” Right?? No, he’d say that he put her (too) “back in bed” to account for her makeup etc. being on the sheets. There’s no reason to put her “back in bed” after murdering her elsewhere – by that point, the only priority is getting rid of the body. Remember, she was a big woman who probably weighed about as much as Chris did!

        I am of the opinion that he murdered her in the bed – that would account for her makeup being on the pillowcases. If she’d had opportunity to do her nighttime routine, she would have removed her makeup before getting into bed. I suspect that CW was all lovey dovey when she got home, which was *exactly* what she was desperate for, and when he offered her a backrub, she wouldn’t say no. And she’d be in the perfect position to be strangled, especially with her recent neck surgery making her even less flexible than normal. But I understand that not everyone finds this scenario persuasive.

  4. Kaye

    If the murders occurred upstairs, that could also explain why the fans were on what seemed to be a high setting—to make sure that any potential smells from their deaths might be dissipated and minimized.

    • nickvdl

      Good point.

      • Rachel

        The Watts’ AC unit was not working, was broken. It was uncomfortably warm upstairs. I thought everyone knew that…didn’t it come out in the original doc. release?

    • Ralph Oscar

      That would also dissipate any lingering odors from cleaning products.

      • crytearsz

        He didn’t have time to clean up after the murder…he planned to do that later after work but those plans were foiled by Shanann best friend…thank God

  5. Sylvester

    One more inconsistency. If you heard a noise (while he was downstairs), which he downplays as “I didn’t think anything of it”, then what was his reason for returning back upstairs? Having gone back upstairs wouldn’t you first investigate the source of he noise? Instead he’s gazing into the monitor for his information. He’s gone to a lot of trouble to try and weave together some sort of story that has the girls be lifeless in their beds, which serves as another decoy or distraction for where they actually were killed and when.

    • Ralph Oscar

      Agreed. The details Chris includes in his explanation aren’t rational. They don’t make sense.

  6. Cheryl Filar

    Given the girls were light sleepers, it was late, Shan’ann was tired, not feeling well, and had to be up in fewer than five hours, would she have risked checking on Bella and CeCe and awakening them? Assuming she made it upstairs, perhaps she relied on the monitors to check on the children. However, thinking about all of this, I tend to cycle back to Nick’s original theory of Shan’ann’s being ambushed downstairs almost immediately upon her arrival home. My preference for this theory is based on the very close proximity of the Watts’s home to those on either side. If the children were lying dead in their beds, or anywhere else in the house, I do not think Chris would want to risk a noisy altercation if Shan’ann discovered them—especially at that late hour when potential loud voices, shrieks, and Deeter’s barking would be likely heard and alarm nearby neighbors.

    • Clean Queen

      I have to agree strongly with this. My kids weren’t necessarily light sleepers, but my youngest was a difficult sleeper. It was hard to get him to sleep, and he was very sensitive to sleep issues. As a result, and for my own sanity, I guarded his sleep with my life LOL! I did everything I could to keep things quiet and avoid waking him up. If I had come home after a business trip extremely late at night, I don’t know that I would’ve gone in their rooms. Especially not if I could see them on the baby monitor. Being pregnant and exhausted, I highly doubt she would have gone into check on her girls. Anything is possible though. It just doesn’t seem likely.

    • nancyjames3358

      “I do not think Chris would want to risk a noisy altercation if Shan’ann discovered them”

      Agree, I think Sha’nann would go postal if she had an “inclination” of what was happening.

      I can’t get past the image of CW as a passive, non confrontational, “nice” guy, taking the easy way out – attacking Sha’nann immediately and drugging the girls before he smothered them.

      He appears not to bright, a bit lazy, and wanting this marriage/family episode over so he can move on to nirvana with NK.

      Unfortunately, no facts just psychological gut feeling due to real life experience with a guy who mirrors CW personality.

      • Ralph Oscar

        For someone ‘not too bright, a bit lazy’, it’s quite confusing that he left so little evidence that the investigators couldn’t determine where the murders had taken place (specifically), or when, or any such details, isn’t it? I mean, Chris *told* them where to find the bodies… They didn’t figure that out on their own from whatever clues Chris had lazily, stupidly left behind, did they?

      • nancyjames3358

        “They didn’t figure that out on their own from whatever clues Chris had lazily, stupidly left behind, did they?”

        You are right Ralph, he’s a Rocket Scientist. Appears to be a lazy and stupid comment on my part. My Bad!

      • Sideaffected

        I’m responding to Ralph/Nick but they did find Shanaan’s body, during the polygraph, and then he told them where the kids were.

  7. Sylvester

    He couldn’t possibly have managed that many variables, placing bodies in their beds, and waiting for her to discover them. What if she didn’t check on them? What if she used the baby monitor herself to know they were asleep in their beds so as not to waken them?

    I’m still confused though as to where he murdered them. Woudn’t they need to have been separated? He can’t run the risk of one waking up and seeing the other one being smothered. Then there would be panic, and struggling. However, giving them “medicine”, their blankets, and positioning them in front of a television set would conk them out. Then he left the television set on, which Nichol heard in the background.

    • Clean Queen

      I think that is what I come back to in the end. Pure common sense says a person would want as few variables as possible. It’s why I keep coming back to Nick’s original theory of the SW being killed when she walked in the door. I can’t imagine risking SW wandering around the house and Chris waiting until she is asleep. Too much can go wrong. Also, since CW was non-confrontational, especially with his wife, I would think he’d want to get the job done immediately. He wouldn’t want a verbal altercation, not only because of the noise, but because that could lead to a host of unknowns for him.
      Of course, there are people who don’t believe the crime was premeditated and they rely on the theory of an altercation and CW “snapping”. I simply just don’t believe that. If a person believes she was killed at the stairs upon entering, by default, the crime would have to be premeditated. In my opinion, it most definitely was.

    • Ralph Oscar

      “giving them “medicine”, their blankets, and positioning them in front of a television set would conk them out.”

      This scenario is very compelling.

  8. Sylvester

    His phone call to Cody too – that shows premeditation. He had to make sure he could go to Cervi 319 alone. Once that plan was cemented, he could go into action.

  9. K

    My opinion is that CW probably knew the plane had landed, he probably had an app on his phone for the airline. It just feels to me that he would have hidden in the dark and attacked her after she came in. The reason I do agree that the murder of the children was premeditated is that he was cold towards the children on vacation in North Carolina. From the airport video, he didn’t look cold so it could be that his kids were nasty to him or said little things they heard from SW or her family about the ice cream incident and that made his decision to kill them much easier as he could detach from them and allow anger to seep into his heart instead of love.I firmly believe that if he had killed SW but not the children, he would have had a long sentence but not life. The murder of the children and the disposal of them is probably the most damning crime against CW. But if these kids were throwing chicken nuggets at him, he was probably lumping them in with SW as being the problem he wanted to solve by murder. My guess is that he killed those kids and already had them lined up in the garage to dispose of. I do not believe SW would have tried to resuscitate them first, I think she would have dialed 911.Actually, that is what you should do in a case like that, calling 911 is the first priority and then administering first aid. CW would have known that from his job instruction on first aid. I don’t think he would have taken the risk of SW calling 911 so he probably hid in the dark waiting for her to come in. My own personal experience with my mother passing in my home after about 6 months of hospice was that she didn’t turn blue, she actually turned very white as the blood left her face and she became extremely cold. The hospice nurse also had told me to watch for a dropped jaw as a sign of death, and that is what I noticed first. Hours later when the funeral home came to get her she didn’t really smell to me and she didn’t seem to have rigor mortis except that my sister came and put a towel under her chin to so her mouth wasn’t gaping open. Not a memory I enjoy thinking about. She was very old, but it was still traumatic.

  10. Liz

    I believe the blankies and stuffed animals being removed from the house were cover that Shanann and the girls had left on their own and was not a part of the murder scene explicitly.

    Chris could have just let the girls do their normal routine, and gone to their beds. Whether he smothered them or gave them overdoses, I don’t think we will know unless he ever speaks. The autopsies say smothered by another human, something to that affect. I believe the overdoses would have dissipated in their systems and could not be traced given the time elapsed.

    Celeste’s hair was listed as red brown which to me means they could not wash the girls very well because of the skin slippage from the hot oils and gases they had been placed in. What could they really tell?

    If Chris was counting Shannan coming home exhausted, he could have overdosed and left the kids in their beds hoping she would see them on the baby monitors. If she was subject to going to their rooms, then he could really have smothered them after Shanann came home. Who was killed first, the girls or their mom? He let Shanann fall asleep then strangled her. He was a non-confrontational person, and this would work. I think she woke up while he was strangling her, because I know from reading one of her eyes was open … forget where, and I believe her eyes watered, leaving mascara on the pillow case or other sheet. Now he could wrap her up easily in the bottom sheet. Once he got rid of the bodies at Cervi-319 he would have completed his escape to nirvana. Wrong, he didn’t think everything through. He was too ready to do it. He wasn’t getting rid of the Lexus because he would not have transportation. He never considered anyone else, because he was only thinking of himself. He didn’t even think about that Nikki, his lover, would find him repulsive now. Kill them, get rid of them, call the school. All solved.

    • Ralph Oscar

      “He wasn’t getting rid of the Lexus because he would not have transportation.”

      It was a *leased* Lexus, so there would be no point to getting rid of it. He was on the hook for it because it was leased in Shan’Ann’s name (or SW and his names together, since she had lousy credit). They were the ones responsible for that vehicle, not Le-Vel (Thrive). While Le-Vel would issue an $800 car allowance check for each month that Shan’Ann met her sales quota, there would be no check if she missed that target. And if she quit selling (as she’d have to if she were dead), then those lease payments would have to be paid by Chris – you’re pretty much stuck with the leased vehicle until the lease ends. He couldn’t have gotten out of that lease without a hit to his credit rating, I don’t think.

      And once he sold the house, he’d have enough money to make the lease payments.

  11. Liz

    oh …. and get the ring off her finger.

    • Ralph Oscar

      Perhaps he was thinking he’d reset the solitaire in a new setting for NK… A cheap way to get an expensive diamond ring. My father had dementia, and when my mother was in the final phase of the cancer that killed her, she said that her recently-deceased elderly cousin had two 1+ ct diamond rings, and she wanted to give me one for my son. When I went out (on her request) to help settle things (she was still alive but in very bad shape) a month later, my father told me he couldn’t find those rings – he didn’t know *what* had happened. Some months later, he was telling me how his new girlfriend wanted him to pay $20,000 to buy her this man they knew’s former wife’s 4 ct diamond ring (since his new wife didn’t like it), and Dad boasted that he’d given his girlfriend a nice diamond ring (“Show her, honey”) and it hadn’t cost him a thing! It was a ring with two large diamonds on it, made from the two rings my mother’s elderly cousin had owned! “OH!” I said. “So THAT’s where those two rings Mom said she wanted my son and my brother’s 2nd son to have went!” He then pulled a face and said, “Well, if THAT’s what she wanted, she certainly could have told ME!”

      He’d been *right there*. In the room, standing 2 feet from her when she explained this plan to me. This was some months before he started dating the new girlfriend (herself an elderly widow). He probably just didn’t like the idea of valuable assets going to relations he didn’t give a crap about. He never liked children (except for his own). Family sucks.

  12. thornton831

    I’m almost sure the pictures above were taken after he changed the beds on the 13th. On the pillow on Bellas’ bed is her “blankie”. Hers isn’t missing.

    • Sylvester

      Except the one where both of them are asleep in Bella’s bed.

  13. Ralph Oscar

    Do dead bodies really begin to stink that soon?

  14. Ralph Oscar

    The report notes that the only messy area in the house is Shan’Ann’s office. I believe it was neat as a pin when she left for NC, but that CW rifled through it after receiving disturbing information in the mail that confirmed how dire their financial situation was. Before then, Shan’Ann would have handled all the mail; Chris wouldn’t have seen any of it.

    • Sylvester

      Her shoe closet looks like a tornado hit it too

      • Ralph Oscar

        I have no explanation for that.

      • Maura

        Kids love playing hide and seek especially in closets. Since SW had all of those heels maybe the girls played dress up as Mommy while she was away.

  15. Ralph Oscar

    In that hour and a half between when SW texted CW that the flight would be delayed and he sent that “Holy crap!” reply, I suspect he was cleaning up after having killed the girls. Otherwise, I think he would have texted back immediately.

    This hypothesis indicates that Chris wanted it to all be done and ready to go before Shan’Ann got home so that he could turn his attention entirely to her.

    Since the girls were light sleepers, I don’t think Shan’Ann, arriving home exhausted, would have gone into their rooms or even opened the doors for fear of waking them and then having them be awake so she couldn’t go to sleep. If anything, she just peeked in on them via the baby monitors.

    • Fred Gonzalez

      I liked this possible timetable and then I recall reading that Watts and NK spoke for approx. 2 hours that night from roughly 9-11pm, if I remember correctly. So I feel if he did murder his girls before SW arrived it was either before 9 pm or after 11. Personally I have no freaking clue when he did what. With so little evidence left behind this guy left a blurry, foggy, down is up and up is down of a crime scene.

      • Ralph Oscar

        “So I feel if he did murder his girls before SW arrived it was either before 9 pm or after 11.”

        I vote for before 9 PM. The scenario I find most compelling is that he used some of Shan’Ann’s leftover Oxycodone to drug and incapacitate the girls and then put plastic bags over their heads so they’d quietly suffocate. He needn’t even be in the room while it was happening. If CW did this ca. 6 PM, the girls’ typical bedtime, then it would be finished and he could have gotten everything nicely in order by 9 PM – Daddy gets the treat of a nice long conversation with NK. SW’s flight was delayed; there wasn’t anything for CW to do but wait by this point, so he might as well watch some TV and talk with NK.

        “With so little evidence left behind this guy left a blurry, foggy, down is up and up is down of a crime scene.”

        For all the haters saying how “dumb” and “incompetent” CW was as a murderer, he sure cleaned up nice…

        • Erica Robinson

          Nichol said that if he was sleeping at his own place they would talk on the phone till they nodded off. He was due to get up for work at 4am. Shannan was coming home super late. Nichol mentioned it being odd that the tv was on so late. Chris wasn’t doing his ‘usual’ thing of chatting with her till they fell asleep. He had the tv on because he wasn’t going to sleep in preparation for his work day… he was waiting up for Shannan to get home so he could murder her.
          He might’ve planned to murder the girls after Shannan, but once that flight got delayed so long I think he would’ve killed the girls first. He had all those hours sitting up waiting for her.
          I think he planned to kill all three of them, and I think the flight delay could’ve somewhat changed the order in which he’d decided to do it.

          • nickvdl

            Well, bear in mind he had a 2 hour conversation with Nichol ending at 23:00. This was before he knew about the flight delay. Also, Nichol said she heard a television playing loudly in the background that night. It’s unlikely it would be on that late if the children were still alive.

          • Erica Robinson

            That’s what I meant, that the tv was on unusually late, because this night, unlike others, he wasn’t going to sleep.

            I didn’t think about the tv not being on that late if the children were alive, wow 🙁

          • Erica Robinson

            Also, this is probably mentioned elsewhere on your site but I still have a tonne of reading to go… Chris would’ve known that the credit card charges for dinner would’ve alerted Shannan. He’d been seeing Nichol for weeks then and managed to keep it a secret. Do you think maybe he’d already decided to kill her before that night, which meant he no longer had to worry about hiding his CC charges?

          • nickvdl

            Yeah I think the premeditation started a few days earlier, and the psychological preparation a few weeks earlier. That means he was starting to think about it, then made up his mind and started trying to figure out what was the best way to kill each of them, when, and how to get rid of the bodies.

  16. Victor

    I have a feeling this question/observation has been posed on a much earlier post, but not sure that it was ever answered…why are there “bolster” pillows on Bella’s bed? She was nearly five and very unlikely to roll out of her bed; I don’t have kids that age, is this normal practice? The two bolster pillows also have cases on which match Cece’s bedspread. Bella’s duvet has no cover on it, which doesn’t seem right.
    Could the girls have shared Bella’s bed that night? If so, drugging them with ‘dinner’ seems a likely scenario because there’s no way the other girl would have stayed asleep if Chris was harming her sister. If Shanann checked on them via the baby monitor and they were sharing a bed that wouldn’t be suspicious, because they obviously did that sometimes, as per one of the photos above.

    • Clean Queen

      Bella seems a little old for needing bumpers in order to avoid falling out of bed. I will say however that my youngest child had a device like that until he was at least four years old from what I remember. The first night he was in his toddler bed and out of the crib, he tumbled right off the end. This happened even though we had one of those side railing bumpers installed on his bed. The other side of the bed was against a wall, and yet he still found his way to the floor! I was kind of hesitant after that to remove the bumpers for a while. As a result, they ended up staying on longer than necessary.
      On a sidenote, my oldest child climbed out of his crib at age 2 1/2 and broke his collarbone. These kinds of experiences can lead parents to be a little more cautious. Maybe that was the case for SW?

    • Ralph Oscar

      “there’s no way the other girl would have stayed asleep if Chris was harming her sister”

      If both were given OD amounts of Shan’ann’s leftover Oxycodone (a powerful pain killer), both would have been so sedated they wouldn’t have been noticing anything at all.

      • ganana

        Ralph Oscar —- agree with your theory that the girls were drugged.

      • Ralph Oscar

        Remember, ganana, the police recovered an internet search CW had made about “80 mg oxycone” or something (Oxycodone was misspelled, which was why they missed it the first investigation).

    • Sylvester

      Very keen powers of observation Victor! I hadn’t noticed the bolster pillows match CeCe’s bedspread. Also I would think it would be CeCe that needs the bolster pillows, not Bella.

      I had thought wherever they were that night, they were together.

      And it looked like there were some packages of stuff in the shoe closet – maybe some Toys R Us bags, not sure, but little girls like hiding and running and investigating in a big house like that with mom gone and he was probably watching sports on television.

      • Ralph Oscar

        “I hadn’t noticed the bolster pillows match CeCe’s bedspread.”

        Are we *certain* that those are bolster pillows and not just the kind of decorative shams that match the bedspread, to cover the utility pillows and look nice when the bed’s made? I realize that them on either side makes them positioned like bolster pillows, but I’m accustomed to bolster pillows being a bit *taller*.

  17. Victor

    @ Sylvester
    “Her shoe closet looks like a tornado hit it too”
    Didn’t they call Cece ‘Tornado’ caus she could ‘destroy’ a room in mere seconds? Chris was alone with those girls all weekend, I could imagine how much that closet would appeal to inquisitive little fingers, especially if Daddy is distracted by his phone/sports shows/skanky ho.

    • Sylvester

      @Victor – and now that I look at it more why didn’t I see this before (adding to my comment to you above). Those pillows, which are being used as bolster pillows on Bella’s bed, are a perfect match for the aqua and lavendar butterfly bedspread from CeCe’s bed. What does this mean. I had thought it odd before, that he would put bolster pillows on a nearly 5 year old’s bed – yet when he’s remade CeCe’s bed it looks like there could be three pillows inside her bed covered over. One at the head and two “lumps” on each side. He’s also carefully put a “blankie” on one of the bolster pillows on Bella’s bed. That’s the red satin trim you are looking at.

      He’s covered over CeCe’s bed, but turned down Bella’s bed. Did Bella’s bed require even more “airing out.”? Why would he stage the beds in this way. And of course we saw that he put Shan’ann’s maternity shorts, hoodie and t shirt and a paper leis at the foot of his bed but more over to her side. There is no reason to do so much “arranging” in my opinion. Washing and cleaning are one thing, but arranging – that’s a little more complicated task. All I can suggest is that he wants whoever is viewing his display to think one thing while he knows it’s something else. Like the Ramsey’s did – even in their whirlwind of a frufru cluttered house. Objects and people were arranged to give one impression while hiding the true scenario.

  18. Duttdip

    Here’s a completely new “out-of-the-box” theory. This is based on the assumption that his interviews and confession had some “true snapshots”. Just throwing it out there, please pardon if you find it ridiculous 🙂

    1. Chris was not as stupid as he eventually looked to be. He would not plan on killing three people and think he could go unsuspected and uncaught.
    2. The plan was not to kill Shanann but to set her up, land her behind the bars and not have to pay a dime for alimony. A physical confrontation with Shanann could go either way and CW was not bold enough to do it that way.
    3. He killed the kids assuming Shanann would not peep into their rooms, lest she wakes them up. Also, Shanann being an antiseptic, cleanliness-freak would not enter the rooms directly after coming back from an air-travel. He mentions “Bella has woken up twice” to make sure Shanann remains extra sensitive to it.
    4. He would spread the “emotional conversation” story and that he left for work after that.
    5. Since he slept in the basement and left before they woke up, Shanann would have to answer for a) what happened upstairs and/or b) what happened after he left. She would be implicated for having reacted to the “emotional conversation” and the story of her killing the kids would hold up. As such, he was careful not to leave any fingerprint which he confidently asserted during the interrogation.
    6. The story would be credible to NK as well. And she would get even more sympathetic towards him and less so towards Shanann.

    But…………….Assumption #3 went awry. Shanann somehow checked on them after suspecting either from smell or by looking at the monitor. She then rushed to resuscitate one of them, but was attacked from behind, exactly the same way Chris enacted it during the interrogation.

    Portions of the plan and the truth come out during the various stages of interrogation – the conceived “emotional conversation”, her reaction to it, the baby monitor, him trying to stop her, wrestling her down and eventually killing her.

    The above theory makes a big assumption though – volunteering to go to Cervi 3-19 on Monday morning was either purely coincidental, or an excuse to leave earlier than usual.

    • Ralph Oscar

      “He mentions “Bella has woken up twice” to make sure Shanann remains extra sensitive to it.”

      This is a great observation.

      As for the rest, it’s an interesting hypothesis – it would’ve been great if he could have gotten away with it. He still might have been stuck raising an infant son, though, and it doesn’t sound like he was interested in that.

      In this scenario, the question of how the girls were killed becomes an issue. If they were drugged (as seems likely from Chris’s internet searches for the effects of “80mg Oxycodone”) and then smothered, autopsy might find traces (hard to explain from the SW framing scenario), and the timing of their deaths as well (before SW got home).

      If CW planned for the girls’ bodies to never be found (dissolved in the caustic crude), then it doesn’t really matter HOW he kills them, just that he disposes of them where they won’t be found until too late, and make sure no traces/clues left behind. The murder scene (the house) was amazingly clean – no real clear evidence that anything had happened there. He really covered his tracks.

      As for your last point, Chris did leave at his normal time on Monday morning – that’s the time he typically took off for work. He wasn’t leaving early. The difference was that he went straight to the field instead of checking in at the office first, but his coworker Kodi Roberts had given him the “out” by mentioning Cervi 3-19 needing to be checked, at which point CW offered to do it himself (he was obviously qualified to do whatever needed to be done) and told Kodi Roberts he didn’t need to be there (since the task apparently only took one person) and KR responded with relief because there was somewhere else he could go be productive instead. Thus, CW ascertained that he would be alone at Cervi 3-19 for a certain limited amount of time. That was Friday; that must have been the bit of information that set his plans in motion.

    • HB

      Great thinking, it’s a really interesting theory.

      “The above theory makes a big assumption though – volunteering to go to Cervi 3-19 on Monday morning was either purely coincidental, or an excuse to leave earlier than usual.”

      Micheal Rouke admitted it wasn’t out if the ordinary for Chris to volunteer to help out his co-workers. The only thing that was peculiar was not going to the office first.

  19. matt

    What about, Watts had been warming up to shannan, allowing her to hug him etc so that when she got home and found him sleeping in their bed, she would climb in beside him and fall asleep, the girls are still alive at this point.

    The silver fox is however, just lying there awake and waiting, some time later when the confrontation-avoider is sure she’s asleep, he rolls over and strangles her, quickly and relatively silently, with shan’ann barely waking. Now that he’s rid himself of the main antagonist, he can go in to the girls rooms and smother them one by one.

    A much more unlikely scenario I agree, as he wouldn’t want to risk so many variables (shan’ann doesn’t get in to bed, the girls wake up etc), just kicking around another idea.

  20. Sylvester

    Please take a look here at these stills inside the house. Could that be the mate to the blue nitrile glove found on top of the refrigerator – under the bed, Chris’s side?

    • matt

      looks too big to be a glove?

      • HB

        I thought so too.

    • Pam Foldesi

      Sylvester – You’re a hawkeye, spotting that blue under the bed!

  21. Sylvester

    Right at 1:19/2:43

    • nickvdl

      It’s the right color.

    • Victor

      It is indeed a very distinctive blue…it could definitely be the other glove

  22. Sylvester

    He might have forgotten it there. No one seemed to be very interested in the glove – only one on top of the refrigerator behind the fly swatter – the other one gone? If he used gloves to wash the dishes then I would think he would have put them under the kitchen sink. House cleaning gloves are usually yellow – although now they come in bright purple and neon orange but that’s in the last 7 months or so, found at the grocery stores. The blue nitrile glove looks to me a work-related glove, used in the industry.

    • Ralph Oscar

      We have a box of disposable utility gloves for this and that (you know, if we ever decide we need to murder someone or something and totally get away with it) and they’re blue.

      • Cheryl Filar

        Lol! Appreciate your gallows humor. It provides a little respite from all the gloom.

  23. Maura

    I agree with those who believe Chris planned the murders and killed his kids before his 9 pm call. Nichol said they talked for 2 hours, which was late for him; he had a TV on so he wasn’t in the basement, and he stared at her repeatedly via Facetime. She thought that was odd. Was it because he had completed step 1 to be with her?

    After Kody called him at 6:10 pm Sunday to confirm CW would go to Cervi alone he acted. The kids had a snack or dinner before their 7pm bedtime. His plan was to OD them on SW’s medication in addition to their regular meds. My first thoughts were he did this in the kitchen or left them in front of a TV while he was seen out back alone at 7:30 pm grilling chicken. Considering the Murdered in their Beds theory——What if——Chris had one plan and modified it due to SW’s flight delay?

    Suppose he gives them the lethal medication and puts them to bed together in Bella’s bed; Cece needs the pillow bolsters in case she rolls out. They die together. He only has to deep clean one bedroom of evidence, but he’ll wash Cece’s sheets too. When SW texts him for pictures of the kids in bed, he doesn’t send them as they are dead in Bella’s room. He lies and says Bella keeps getting up. His first plan was SW will be home before midnight and that he’ll kill her in bed after she peeks at the girls “sleeping” together.

    After dinner however, he learns about her delay. Knowing she won’t be home until 2 am and she won’t risk waking them at that hour, he doesn’t want to leave the bodies upstairs. Did he panic and think that her plane might be delayed again giving him less time for cleanup? Things he said to police contain partial truth such as Bella was blue in the face and Cece’s arm was totally limp when touched. He saw them after he poisoned them.
    Before SW gets home he moves the bodies to the basement and stores them in the freezer or containers. The dogs smelled something in the basement but didn’t check inside the freezers or containers. When Chris stripped Bella’s bedding, the blankets and sheets were put on the floor for a while where the dogs reacted. Chris mentioned the kids’ smelly sheets, although Bella’s would be his true concern, evidence he washed or disposed of at the dumpster on Monday.

    Chris can’t murder his wife in bed because he’s not gone to bed yet. And won’t all night. Chris killed SW downstairs as soon as she came home because she couldn’t go upstairs and see that the kids weren’t there.Time is running out. He had 3 ½ hours before he had to leave for work with the bodies. Maybe he didn’t finish remaking the beds while he tried to get into her phone and couldn’t due to her new password.

    • Ralph Oscar

      That’s a completely believable scenario, Maura. The only detail it doesn’t account for is why Shan’Ann’s mascara is smeared on the *pillows* in the master bedroom. Why would CW drag her body all the way upstairs and put it into the bed, only to remove it again, thump it down the stairs wrapped in the fitted sheet, and then leave it in a heap at the bottom of the stairs, waiting until he was ready to load it into his truck?

      • Ralph Oscar

        Were those mascara smears definitively matched to Shan’Ann? Could they have been NK’s mascara smears from staying over with CW while SW was out of town? SW was compulsive about removing her makeup before bed, after all. Unless she was off-schedule in the bed for some reason before she had a chance to remover her makeup per her established routine, why should the mascara smears be SW’s?

      • Victor

        I’m wondering if those mascara stains could be old,ie: from before Shanann left for Arizona. She wrote that she was distraught, crying herself to sleep and that she’d kicked Chris out of bed..maybe she never got around to changing the pillowcases, OCD as she was, she had a shitload of weight & worry on her mind. Chris probably didn’t even notice the mascara stains. Just saying they’re not necessarily from *that* night.

      • Maura

        See comments below about the mascara.
        I don’t believe SW ever made it upstairs especially after her late arrival. For some reason CW grabbed a sheet off the master bed to transport her body. He lied when he said that he laid her body on the master bed. He wouldn’t want to have any evidence in that room because it would only point to him.

        When you think about it the most convenient rooms for him were downstairs which were less furnished and easier to clean, and closer to his truck.

    • Sideaffected

      Why are you suggesting that they overdosed when, at least Bella, was clearly smothered and died violently and fighting him?

      • Maura

        Nick provides details in his books about how he thinks Bella did not fight back while alive but that her injuries happened being shoved into the tank. CW is passive and would not create a scenario where the kids could fight or scream Sunday evening with the neighbors all around.

        On other posts we’ve talked at length about his Google searches right before the murders. In the Discovery docs one search CW did that he deleted but police recovered, was looking for 80 mcg Oyxcodone.

        Also, SW had lupus and neck surgery so she was prescribed morphine and/or oxycotin and their basement had a container of her drugs for when she needed them. If Bella was smothered it happened most likely after they were sedated. The kids took regular meds every night before bed as part of their routine. Easy to add something extra. We think CW put them in the tanks because oil dissolves opioids and other drugs very easily. They were in tanks for 4 days so the autopsy wouldn’t show the drugs and exact cause of death.

      • Pam Foldesi

        Sideaffected – Yes.
        I read that Bella had injuries to her heels, which brings a vision of her on her back, kicking her feet up and down against something hard.
        Not her bed.
        Geez, that was hard to type.

  24. Sylvester

    I most definitely think he had to have killed the girls after affirming to Cody that he and he alone would be needed at Cervi 319. Didn’t want him to bring him any Gatorade either! Interesting that both dogs alerted to the same spot – under the stairs – but by that white double door storage cabinet. What might he have been fiddling with there?

    Also i think Chris contaminated almost every item they wanted to get a scent from. Could the first dog have gotten confused by all of the mixed smells? That particular dog alerted in several spots in the basement – for instance over by Chris’s bed. And I don’t think there were any dead bodies (or aggressive acts) by his bed down there.

    He’s on the phone with Nichol right when his wife calls in to tell him her flight has been delayed. And he doesn’t pick up! Now that’s a big risk, isn’t it? Was he planning on talking to Nichol right on up to the time he expected her to walk through the door? Or was her estimated time of arrival closer to midnight.

    Anyway Maura, thank you for your scenario. It’s helping me at least, put it together. Oh – and did you notice that in the picture above where Bella and CeCe are sleeping together, there don’t appear to be any bumper pillows? Why is that?

    • mitzi2006

      I think that pic of Bella and Ceecee in bed was taken in North Carolina, if you look at one of the postings(there are two) in her photo section of Facebook someone commented about mosquitos and it was 31 weeks ago which would be at that time. Also Bella had a headboard that was fairly high, this one has none or could be the wall. That comforter is also stitched differently than Bella’s and Shan’anns

    • Ralph Oscar

      Random question: Is Febreeze any good at obscuring/confusing corpse odors? The ads make it seem like it can cover pretty much any odor.

      • Victor

        Haha, interesting question! Any undertakers in the house?

      • K

        I think the smelly sheets that CW was referencing would likely be from vomit from the Oxycodone, as that is a very common side affect. They also could have defecated or released urine, also common at death. I don’t think the bodies smell for a while. My own mother died in my house and since it was hospice and a known event to occur, it was at least four hours before the undertaker removed her. She did not smell. I do think the girls may have vomited if they were given drugs to kill them and that is why CW said the sheets were smelly.

        • nickvdl

          That’s interesting. If true, the cops would have likely smelled something in the bedrooms on the 13th.

  25. Maura

    It’s possible that Chris put the bumpers around Cece to entice her to sleep with her sister or keep her from rolling after sedation. Maybe in the previous pic SW had put them to bed and Cece didn’t want the bumpers on that night. I agree that CW contaminated everything he touched on purpose. I’ve thought when CW carried the girls’ bodies down to the basement he would lay them out on that bed before bagging or wrapping them further. So briefly they were on the bed.

    Since he had 2 phones he was getting flight alerts and/or texts about the plane maybe during his call which he extended.

    • Duttdip

      Correct. If he really sedated them to death, he would not have liked them to be jolted and awakened by falling on the floor. And hence the bumpers.

      • Ralph Oscar

        What you’re describing is a scenario where the children are basically packed/packaged. Like you’d pack something fragile that you intend to ship. They’re placed such that they will just die without incident – CeCe was wearing a diaper; I imagine one of her diapers could have been put on Bella once she was adequately sedated just to make sure there wouldn’t be any mess. By that point, she wouldn’t have been moving around any more, so it wouldn’t matter if the diaper was a little too small. It would do the job.

        If there had been an elimination accident, that would explain why the sheets “smelled bad”, wouldn’t it?

  26. Sylvester

    Good points!

  27. ganana

    Interesting posts! Reading this just makes it more maddening that only one person can provide the answers to the questions – how did he commit these crimes and what was his thinking process from the time he made the decision up until he confessed. And WHY did he do this- and his answers,if truthful, could be a lot different from what our speculations are.

    Relating to when the little girls died, when you think of what we have read and heard about Chris’s obsession with cleaning, neatness and order – it seems he would go about the murders the same way he approached everything else–by planning down to what he believed was the last detail. And by choosing a method that would eliminate conflict, disorder, noise, and chaos.

    He thought originally that Shan’ann would be home earlier – that is why I think he killed the girls early in the evening, using one or more of their sheets to wrap them in until he could get them to the basement where he put them in garbage bags. They may have lain in the sheets for a while, possibly while he was on the telephone those 111 minutes. The smell of urine on the sheets could have been what he referred to when he mentioned that the sheets needed washing.

    I don’t see how he would have waited until Shan’ann came home and gone up the stairs to find them not in their beds or even in their beds but not breathing. This would have caused the out of control situation he wanted to avoid at all costs. It makes more sense for him to lie in wait and attack her before she went upstairs. These are the scenarios described in the nvdleek books, and they make the most sense, given Chris Watt’s personality and the way he did things.

    Perhaps Shan’ann had her children on her mind when she got home —-she set her stuff down and was headed up the stairs. She may have sensed that something was off when Chris didn’t send her the photo of them sleeping. Tired, worried, and alone, she would have presented a vulnerable target for her killer, whose rage was finally being set loose.

    • Ralph Oscar

      “This would have caused the out of control situation he wanted to avoid at all costs. It makes more sense for him to lie in wait and attack her before she went upstairs. ”

      Agreed, but how did her mascara get smeared on the pillowcases from the master bedroom, then?

      • Victor

        In addition to my reply above, I forgot to add: Shanann had a rigorous nighttime routine where she cleaned her makeup off, etc, but I’m wondering if she let that slide sometimes that week or so she was back. The circumstances she was facing were incredibly stressful and heartbreaking…many people would let such things slide and just crumple into bed and cry it out. In one particular photo [selfie] she sent a friend in those last days, she appears to have absolutely no makeup on, sitting in her car and just looking distraught – a distinct, heartbreaking difference from the carefully made-up and glowing Shanann of times previous.

    • Ralph Oscar

      “This would have caused the out of control situation he wanted to avoid at all costs. It makes more sense for him to lie in wait and attack her before she went upstairs. ”

      Fair enough, but how, then, do you account for her mascara smeared on the pillowcases from the master bedroom upstairs?

      • nickvdl

        It hasn’t been established that those smears/stains are mascara. I personally don’t think it looks anything like mascara, but if you do, you can always do a practical experiment and compare what mascara looks like smeared on a sheet or pillow case.

      • Maura

        People have speculated stains on pillow case were mascara. The sheet and pillow cases were thrown in the kitchen trash at the bottom of the can. CW emptied all of the household trash cans on top, I presume to hide them. So stains could have been coffee grinds or any number of remnants. Deeter’s food?

      • Ralph Oscar

        “It hasn’t been established that those smears/stains are mascara. I personally don’t think it looks anything like mascara, but if you do, you can always do a practical experiment and compare what mascara looks like smeared on a sheet or pillow case.”

        Frankly, I haven’t seen them – just going off what others were saying. IF there were indeed mascara smears on at least one pillowcase, there should be forensic analysis that could be done to determine if it was SW’s mascara…or someone else’s…

    • nickvdl

      that only one person can provide the answers to the questions>>>So often hear this in true crime, and it’s such a false narrative. When you have thousands of pages of interviews, logs, photos and video, when you have the accused interrogated for hours as well as his friends, mistress and family, we have a lot of answers. But we have to ask the right questions and we have to take the time to find our way to truth. So it definitely isn’t a case that only one person can provide answers.

    • Maura

      I agree. If the kids were killed by 7 pm and she had come home as expected he would have had more than 5 hours post murders to thoroughly clean, wash, make beds, etc. He wouldn’t take the chance that she would go upstairs and cause a scene that neighbors could overhear at 2 am.

  28. Duttdip

    My contention against the “murder at the base of staircase” theory is that the handbag made it to the office. Maybe a touch DNA would reveal if Chris carried it last (unless of course he wore gloves). But, the way it was hung behind the door, it seemed to have a personal and a feminine touch. A man would just dump it on a table. Maybe she left he suitcase, proceeded to the office, made her way back to the staircase and was attacked there.

    Despite strong arguments on why the base of the staircase was the eventual location, I find all other locations plausible too. As such, this whole story contains characters who are filled with twists and contradictions.

    -An OCD, super-organized female who is sloppy with finances.
    -An otherwise analytical, photographic memory possessing male who crafts a rushed and silly plot.

  29. Sylvester

    I’m leaning now toward Watts not putting the girls in black garbage bags – for the following reasons. I went back to one of Nick’s threads where he shows Cervi 319. There, he’s drawn circles around where the sheet was and also the garbage bags. They are close to the sheet. The sheet was over by the hole he dug in the ground. If he bagged up the girls and put them in the truck, he would then have to have removed the bags, since they were carried up those stairs and dropped into the tanks without bags. So what were the garbage bags used for? I think he used the bags to protect the back of his truck from leaking fluids. In fact a roll of those bags were found in his truck. He may have laid out the bags, being the neat person he was, just in case his truck was searched, and also to protect his seat cover and flooring – it was, afterall, Anadarko’s truck.

    It’s possible he removed the bags from the girls when he got to Cervi 319 and they simply blew all the way over to where the sheet was but that’s doubtful. I don’t recall any reports that high winds were prevalent 8/13/18. If he wrapped the girls in blankets then he wouldn’t have to go to the trouble of bagging before he left, and “de-bagging” at the site. They know that he parked close to where he dug his hole due to the tire tracks. If he picked her body up out of the truck it’s likely the bags came with her as he lifted and set her down, then shook her free of the sheet and the bags, put her in the hole, and left his protective covers behind. Likely the blankets he used already had hairs on them from both children and Shan’ann, would could account for the many hairs found in his truck.

  30. Duttdip

    The reasons he would put them in bags are:
    -To answer his neighbor (the lady who left in a red car) or anyone else, in case he accidentally ran into them. What would it look like carrying three corpses in the morning?
    -To drag them and not to carry them, so that nothing gets on his clothes.

    In case he did not put them in bags, how do you think he carried them to the car? And what would have told the neighbor, if he ran into her?

  31. Sylvester

    Yes, I thought of that, but if he used the dark navy blue blanket on the loft couch, and the black and white blanket seen on CeCe while she’s napping he’s still carrying something dark to his truck as he would if he were carrying something in a black lawn and leaf bag. He couldn’t put Shan’ann in a lawn and leaf bag anyway so I think in her case the sheet was just the first cover. Another would be necessary, one that wouldn’t be picked up by the neighbor’s car headlights leaving for the gym that morning. It’s not like his driveway and hers are right next to each other in any event. I’ve looked and looked and I can’t see him carrying anything – maybe she could, but she doesn’t even mention it.

    The neighbor barely noticed him or his family most days. She would have no idea what he was taking to his truck that morning, even if she did manage to look over his way. I got the impression she minded her own business, a wonderful trait to have in a neighbor.

    How do you account for the two trash bags being so far away from the oil tanks if he took the girls out of the bags prior to carrying them up the stairs? He drove his truck over to where he dug the grave.

    • Liz

      The investigators walked in the direction the wind was blowing and found the sheet up against the south fence where it had blown. No kids toys or kids clothes in the sheet like Chris had said. Why would he be bringing kids clothes to the site? After looking around there, in the brush, they found the lawn garbage bags. Discovery Page 483

      It is possible he used the bags on the seat covers. The box of bags was found in the truck. I still don’t think he meant to leave those behind. I think he meant to either bury those items, move the truck back, and change clothes before everyone started arriving. His clean-up at the site was not so good. Why did he bury Shanann. I would definitely be looking for a grave site on the ground where he first went that day whenever I figured the girls weren’t coming back. I would also definitely be looking at the husband of the wife missing as the first person to suspect as well. There’s a lot of things that don’t add up to me. Did Chris skip the Consequences part?

  32. Duttdip

    Based on what was discussed on CNBC today, Amazon Alexa definitely has the ability to listen to everything and therefore to react to the keyword “Alexa”. CBI officer Coder did mention Alexa while interrogating Chris Watts.
    This might have been the incriminating evidence the law enforcement had in possession, and maybe the plea deal was hastened because it would have opened up a huuuge pandora’s box on privacy and got the big tech guys involved..

  33. Sideaffected

    I personally don’t understand why so many people think he was waiting for her, cat-like and ready to pounce. Her walking around and being upright when this happened would have caused the most potential for struggle/defensive wounds. People say he didn’t like confrontation and wouldn’t have wanted to face the music about the charge on her card etc. It was 2 AM! Why wouldn’t she have gone straight to bed, especially with light sleepers for kids? All the bedding being stripped, the smelly sheets-how does this add up to “he jumped out at her in the dark”?

    I think also he tells partial truths but mixes up who does what to whom-I think when he’s describing what SW did to CeeCee he is describing what he did to her. He also does say she smothered them at first and then changes it as his Dad is asking him questions.

    • Sideaffected

      *Describing what he did to SW

      • Sideaffected

        Sorry for multiple posts, but it also seems like most people here have decided that it’s a fact that the kids were killed first and that’s why SW had to have been killed downstairs. Not necessarily the case.

  34. K

    I am surprised that CW didn’t just load them into the Lexus with the girls in the car seats with purse, cell phone and medicine and just drive them off a cliff or river. He was a master mechanic and would probably know how to do something to the car. He didn’t seem to think about the worst case scenario for this murder at all even if he did premeditate it.

    • Maura

      Not passive enough for him. CW googled the price of an Audi A7. Maybe he planned to turn in the Lexus and lease the $70,000 Audi instead to date NK if he’d not been caught.

  35. Sarah

    I do believe that at some point the children were dead in their beds. The first time I heard him mention seeing them in the baby monitor was in the Sermon on the Porch. It struck me as oddly real. Something like he was reliving that. I’m pretty certain that he told the story to detectives in the initial interview in his house. Lastly, when he confessed to killing his wife, he uses the baby monitor story, describing Bella as sprawled and blue. As many have pointed out, there are half truths embedded in lies. Did he drug them, and watched them from the baby monitor as they died. Or perhaps just looked at them in the baby monitor, getting himself back together. Either way, the baby monitor was referenced way too much before he tried to throw Shannan under the bus in desperation during his confession…not to have played a significant role in his memories of that night. JMHO

  36. Liz

    I was just watching ABC2020 The Devil in Disguise series, the Chris Watts episode online. It’s free to watch and I didn’t see it when it aired. There is a small scene that shows the dog and handler walking into Bella’s room and the bed is to the left, and on the right as they have walked in, the dog really starts barking. Something, not sure what, could have happened there. I still can’t shake the feeling that Chris was acting sadistic in the last days, week and that he could have drug Shanaan to the room, with his hand clasped over her mouth, and murdered her right there but making sure she saw his handiwork.

  37. Liz

    and maybe that is why she didn’t fight back.

  38. Liz

    Chris Watts has released more information that will be released to the public March 7. Just saw this in the news.

  39. Sass

    I have a question. Did they happen to have one of those smart thermostats for heat and air conditioning? I only ask because reading about the photo of the fridge thermostat got me thinking about the girls bodies possibly smelling. You can slow down smells from a dead body significantly if you keep it in a cooler room. The room does not have to be freezer or refrigerator cold either. If Chris simply turned down the ac unit to mid or high 60’s, even low 70’s that is more than enough to keep dead bodies from stinking for awhile. If they had a smart thermostat it could have possibly showed times when the ac was lowered and to what temperature. Just a thought.

  40. Kara

    Okay… here’s a thought. What if CW did kill the girls by drugging them, but only accidentally? he knew it was his last night before SW came back, and he wanted all the time he could have with NK. Undisturbed and without his kids as witnesses. He gives them too much oxy, and they both overdose. CW tries to revive the girls with no avail, SW comes home, starts to check on the girls, and in a desperate attempt to hide it all CW attacks her when she gets in the door, to prevent her from going up the stairs. That’s why it was so easy for him to get her in the truck. He only had to grab a sheet form upstairs, wrap her in it and take her out.. I feel like we are over complicating and simple crime committed by a simple dumb man

    • nickvdl

      You must be one of those that can’t see – or won’t – the premeditated aspect. Careful, you may be taking a simple, dumb crime and making it too simple, and too dumb.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *