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

The Turning Point in Kessinger’s Interview with CBI Agent Kevin Koback

For the first 20 minutes of the two hour plus discussion on Thursday, August 16th, Kessinger speaks in vanilla generalizations. Even after Koback reminds Kessinger that they’re talking because a woman is dead [Shan’ann’s body was exhumed hours prior to the discussion], and it’s become a homicide investigation, Kessinger still pushes back telling him she’s can’t give him specific information. She tells Koback, who is grovelling for details at one point:

It’s not gonna happen!

But then there’s a turning point. Kessinger begins to reveal slightly more and then  more still. Below is Koback’s summary following the turning point in his interrogation of Watts’ mistress.

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  1. Sylvester

    People have taken her comment about the wedding ring out of context. I see it in context now. “Chris asked Nichol how much she thought the ring was worth.” She couldn’t possibly have taken a stab at that unless he sent her a picture of it – which I’m sure he deleted afterward.

    Also I didn’t understand, previously, her comment that she thought the text message he sent her at 3:45 p.m. was “purposely sent at that time.” But now I see that in context as well – because they had talked throughout the day 8/13 and he never mentioned his wife was missing until 3:45 p.m.

    She’s a bit vague at times though. The second time she visited his home she says she saw a picture of his wife and kids – but not the first time? Although that could be – if the first time they went down to the basement and she sat on the livingroom floor or ate in the kitchen. This implies the second time she was in his home she went upstairs. But I do think she knows exactly what they talked about on their 111 minute conversation and she doesn’t want to disclose it. Just a guess here but it could be they were making future plans to be together, and she doesn’t want to be implicated in the crime.

    • Shannon

      How strange that Chris thought about pawning his ring to Shanann. I wonder why. She could have been buried with it. I wonder the ring is now.
      If Chris didn’t pawn it, I bet her parents did. They’ve gotten rid of her stuff at a store. There very money hungry.
      I’ve been in a married mans house, without wife there. I felt like an intruder in another’ woman’s home. I didn’t like it.

      • thetinytech2018

        I’ve noticed this as well and commented on it elsewhere, but you’re absolutely right about her parents. Even NA had a “Killer Sale on Thrive” (tacky much?) and her parents were lying to the public in order to cash in on that garbage scam their daughter was part of. Shan’ann and her parents seem to believe they were entitled to other people’s things, nice things, for simply existing. Others have to work for it, but not them, and just like they promised the proceeds of them selling Thrive to charity, well…that never happened. Most likely the reason being was because they thought they’d get rich quick, it Shan’ann was selling a few units a month and was rich, well they’ll certainly be rolling in dough by out doing her! Only they see how very little it actually brought it, and they aren’t willing to part with that small amount of money they made, even if they did promise it to charity. They thought there would be more! How was Shan’ann able to afford anything with the pittance she must have made? She said she was so successful but the parents sold more than she ever could and it barely amounted to anything, so it must be Chris that was making the money! So now they’ll go sniffing around and seeing who or what else they can bleed dry for a payday, because like Shan’ann, they’re entitled to it! Don’t you know what they’ve been through? Now quick, use my affiliate link and buy some product, is what Shan’ann would’ve wanted.

        It’s a bizarre mindset and really shows you what her and her family were about. At the very least, we now know where she gets her entitlement from. It surely wasn’t from hard work, that much has been glaringly obvious throughout the case.

  2. Diana

    I’m probably one of the few married women that has always felt bad for Nichol since her identity became public. Yes, she did wrong seeing a man who wasn’t free and clear, and she seems to be intelligent enough that she shouldn’t have fallen for CWs lies, but guess what – she’s human, we’ve all made poor judgements in life. And there’s no way that I believe she had any knowledge or played any role in the murders. As for the Amber Frey googling…I am extremely electronically challenged, but, I read elsewhere that Nichol didn’t necessarily Google “Amber Frey book deal” or “Net Worth”. Someone said it was a type of program similar to Google Complete or Auto Complete. Supposedly those words came up automatically after Nichol simply Google “Amber Frey”. Again, don’t know how true that is.

    I think it’s just awful that Shan’ann talked disrespectful to Chris, especially in front of their kids. What was she thinking, kids commonly emulate their parents! To think that the girls were talking to Chris so horribly, plus throwing chicken nuggets at him – what was Shan’ann thinking to not stop that! I think Nichol was spot on that finances were the main catalyst for the murders, but I would also say the total disrespect from his wife and daughters certainly didn’t help matters.

    I do believe that Chris was the type who needed to be with someone who basically had to tell him what to do, had Chris and Nichols relationship gone the distance, that’s the role where Nichol would’ve just replaced Shan’ann. But she probably would’ve dumped him once she realized how needy he was, she seems like a smart cookie who had temporary insanity over a loser.

    I’ve said that I never saw genuine love from Chris towards his kids and I still believe that. I rarely saw kisses, hugs and snuggling with those girls as Shan’ann did. To me he cared for them just out of a sense of duty. The fact that Nichol said Chris’s eyes were different, he wasn’t the Chris she knew tells me she also saw a side of him that I saw in all those videos. I believe Chris is devoid of feelings of real love. I think he only “acted” in a way that he knew people expected of him. It doesn’t shock me that he had no close male friends other than his buddy Mark who lived in San Diego, he rarely saw the guy! What else says he’s devoid of real love to me is having to Google “How it feels to say you love someone” or “When to tell someone for the first time that you love them”. Who Google’s that! I’m not a doctor, so I’m not going to label someone I’ve never treated and don’t know, but I do wonder about his mental state when he murdered his family. I’m not saying he fits the legal definition of insanity because he obviously knows right from wrong. I’m just curious of what his medical diagnosis for being an empty shell of a man would be.

    • Shannon

      Hi Diana.
      When you google a name, a list of other things associated with that name comes up. It’s called Marketing. The top 5 things that are important come up.
      Shanann was a Bully.
      NK did nothing wrong. She met a guy, had feelings. No one would ever imagine a killing is going to take place. No one can predict that.
      Maybe in the last year’s of his marriage, he started to want out. Being treated like that, would be awful for anyone.
      Men have egos.
      Maybe he hadn’t really felt love before.
      He doesn’t even look happy in his wedding pictures. He might have never loved Shanann at all.
      Alot of people get married, not feeling in love. I was one of them.

    • Sylvester

      Happy Valentine’s Day.

      It doesn’t seem that Chris was made more so that he was born. He seems to have been the quiet loner all of his life. Many women are attracted to this stereotype, thinking there is something really amazing going on just under the surface, if only they can bring it out. Nichol says in five years he had no one under him at work – he had not really progressed to any kind of supervisory role. Becoming “lead” is a small bump up – you can train someone else, and get a raise in pay grade, but you don’t “boss” anyone. I think Watts was comfortable inside himself. His conflict may have began when he fell out of love with his wife and thought he could fix it by finding someone new. He wanted everything else to remain the same. He wasn’t going to change himself, maybe outwardly in order to attract a prettier healthier mate and rid himself of what he sort of stumbled into 8 years prior – but he wasn’t about to “sit on no psychologist’s couch”, or take a real stand to end his marriage, he was going to do it within the bounds of who he always was – discreet, quiet, insular – and now that it’s all over he’s still not going to fight because fighting was never his game.

    • thetinytech2018

      “What was she thinking?”

      That Chris was a means to an end and her ticket into a lifestyle she thought she was entitled to, even if he didn’t make enough money for that lifestyle. He was there to fund her shoddy life choices, pay her way, give her kids and then he could take a backseat. He was only useful to her when she had a purpose in mind for him, other than that, she wanted him to smile for the camera and play second fiddle.

    • Kathleen Caraway

      Did you see that Chris googled What does it feel like when someone says they love you? And What does it feel like when you tell someone you love them? Aren’t those questions peculiar? I wonder if he’s a psychopath because he confessed as soon as the police gave him an excuse to. And like the family annihilator profile he does seem quilty and remorseful, but these questions are so far beyond ordinary that I do have to wonder.

  3. Diana

    Hey Shannon – yes, I’m aware of all the names and/or words that can and do pop up when you Google something. I read there’s another type of program that takes it to another level above that though. Its something that people and/or businesses actually sign up for, but it’s different than what you’re thinking of. Remember, Nichol used her phone for business too. I’ve been trying to find the name of the program.

    Yes, men have egos, and women do too! If Shan’ann was a bully, she certainly was teaching her girls to be as well if what Nichol said is true – that she told Chris to shut up in front of the kids. Neither parent should be acting that way in front of anyone, kids or adults. Of course it doesn’t justify what Chris did, but it certainly didn’t help matters. I know sometimes people aren’t in love when they marry, but I truly wonder if Chris felt any kind of love like normal people do. I don’t think he does, it would explain how he was able to do what he did and then carry on like any other day!

  4. Sylvester

    Just between you me and the lamppost, my cousin chased a married man with three children across the country and back until she caught him. He returned home to tell his wife he wanted a divorce, they made love one last time, and his wife fell pregnant. He still divorced her, my cousin married him and they have been married for 60 years now. My cousin was young when she fell for him, and she was married herself.

    Nichol was young. But relatively on the old side for having a serious relationship that had gotten close to marriage. She thought Watts was going to be it. When you believe it with all your heart and want it to be some times you ignore warning signs and lies. She makes a bizarre statement above to Koback. She says he didn’t tell her his wife was pregnant because she wouldn’t have wasted her time. She’s presuming his state of mind. I’m thinking what she means is if he had told her she would have dumped him but he wouldn’t know that – but may have suspected that she would. My cousin didn’t dump her beau, she said it was just one in a long long road of setbacks when you take off after a married man. Maybe he looked up what it feels like when you fall in love because it had been so long – or maybe he never fell in love with Shan’ann. The first time I fell in love it was like no other feeling I had ever had in my life. It was strange. And I was 25. So obviously all of those other trysts were really nothing. This is what the songs are all about, suddenly I got it, it was so powerful! And I didn’t know what I would do if I lost it! I just couldn’t lose it. I had never felt more alive in my life.

  5. Duttdip

    Good insights:

    • Duttdip

      Her theory is the same as Josh Rossenberg’s.
      -Chris and Shanann had a normal married life, where sex was a big theme.
      -Neither of them could have murdered the kids under normal circumstances.
      -Chris did not premeditate the act. He was smart enough to plan it better.
      -Something spiralled out of control that night. A tired and physically drained Shanann gave away easily.
      -The children (or at least one of them) were witnesses and had to be eliminated.

  6. liltree3

    Has it been discussed here (sorry if it has) that Nichol was actually taunting Chris with the whole “try to work things out with your wife” suggestion? That she started to feel threatened about him going to NC alone with his family for a week and doubted that he actually planned to leave Shanann so she started to taunt him. He even said, at one point, that it was upsetting to him that she kept urging him to fix things with Shanann while he was trying to tell Nichol that he loved and wanted HER. She was not urging him to work things out with Shanann because it was the “right thing” to do, imo… She was doing it to test his resolve and see what his intentions were since she started to catch more serious feelings for him. No girl is going to try out anal and google wedding dresses for just anybody… just sayin’..

    • LW

      Liltree3, she was totally taunting him! Telling him (supposedly) “you need to work things out with your wife” and sending him nudes? Sounds like taunting to me!

    • Kathleen Caraway

      I agree, Liltree3. All the self righteous stuff Nicol claims she said, like live near your kids, spend your time with them in the transition, let’s take it slowly, etc, IF it ever got said at all was self serving. She wanted him bad. Two hours worth of wedding dress shopping. And she knew he was married. She isn’t much.

  7. liltree3

    Or rather, no girl is going to try out anal and google wedding dresses for just anybody while at the same time genuinely urging them to work things out with their wife…

    • CBH

      I agree 100 %. When one considers the source, it was absolutely intended as a test of his resolve.

  8. Seriously!!

    Shannon, wonder how many thumb’s down you would get if that was an option.

    • paeishaia

      Respectfully agreed.

    • thetinytech2018

      You replied in the wrong place, but Shannons’s input is valued here, as are everyone else who looks at the crime for what it is. I’m sure you’re from the “victim blaming” camp, however acknowledging the part someone played in a terrible situation is anything but victim blaming. Shan’ann was no saint but Chris could’ve walked away instead of killing them, and in order to get to the “why” factor of this crime, we take a look at everyone’s behaviors and what role they played. If you prefer the “Shan’ann was an angel!!111!” Narrative, perhaps Reddit would be more suited to your needs.

      • paeishaia

        No tiny tech I replied to the comment that I respectfully agreed with. You are incorrect on all points. I belong to no camp. How would you gather that. Ask yourself and expose your own beliefs.

      • Mustang Sally

        “Shannons’s input is valued here, as are everyone else who looks at the crime for what it is.”

        Agree, triple tee! 🙂

  9. paeishaia

    Agreed. Commenting and counting “liked” posts and discounting others input because they are “newbies” or otherwise is not helpful or insightful. Redirecting them to other platforms with protected judgments again is not helpful. Speculating on “camps” and who is on who’s team takes the needed insights of others even deeper into circular reasoning and the us against them camp mentality and further away from cause which is never helpful.

    • nickvdl

      If you’re new here, you should know we discuss the case, not each other.

  10. Seriously!!

    I know from reading comments from shannon that she likes to put others down, then cite how great she is because of all the likes she gets. I am wondering if shannon and ttt2018 are the same person.

  11. Duttdip

    Let’s not get there…I have figured out that not all of us are as articulate as Nick or Sylvester and hence our thoughts sometimes get misconstrued as “victim blaming”.

    Personally, I have always stood up for the “glass half full side” of Shanann because:

    1. To me, any human being is good unless definitely proven otherwise. A lot of criticism about Shanann are unfounded and based on either point information or stereotypes such as, “ones engaged in MLM are definitely shallow” or “one with lots of shoes and manicured fingernails must be spoilt”. The people closest to her did not label her as such. At the crux of any profession from being an escort to being an MLM saleswoman lies personal stories of human struggle and I do not want to sit behind a computer and admonish any of them.

    2. There are often sociological and complex psychological genesis to any crime. Even Hitler can be attributed to his abused upbringing, his experiences as a soldier, the high inflation and unemployment in the Weimar Republic, and so on..They still do not and should not justify the crime. There are a million women out there buying shoes and polishing nails. There are not being murdered in dozens, let alone with their children.

    3. All of us are flawed in one way or the other. When we marry, we imbibe those flaws as well. “Chris earned 80%, so why is Shanann spending 80%?” is just the wrong way to go about it. Assuming Shanann’s spending was directed to a common positive cause, it is all good, as long as it is manageable. Including sending kids to an expensive school.. Maybe the school gives some competitive edge worth the investment. If it gets unmanageable, work it out. There are counselors precisely for that. Or seek advice from a friend. Don’t kill.

    But, I do understand that even the criminal at the end of the day is a bundle of chemicals in the brain. And so was Chris.

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