At 5:30 in Oxygen’s clip, Officer Matthew James [the same officer who ultimately arrested Watts late on Wednesday night] asked Watts a series of questions. Oxygen did a great job here in Season 3, Episode 1 of Criminal Confessions, by providing two bodycam perspectives during this line of questioning, along with subtitles to the conversation.
JAMES: And what was the conversation this morning you guys had?
WATTS [Swaying]: It was about us selling the house and the separation.
Again, the priority in that answer is telling. First they talked about the house, then the separation. It’s the same exact way he expressed it to Coonrod on the loft landing.
JAMES: And how’d she take that?
WATTS [Still swaying, Officer Coonrod glances down at his phone beside Watts]: We were both very emotional. And…still crying.
Remember what Watts said during the Sermon on the Porch…
“It wasn’t like an argument, but we had an emotional conversation, let’s leave it at that.”
JAMES: And then, did you see her before you went to work?
JAMES: Did you say anything to her?
WATTS [Stuttering]: Uh…she went back…like, uh…she told me she was going to a friend’s house…[flaps out his hand].
This correction mid-sentence indicates Watts is giving a rehearsed answer. He was going to say she went back to bed, but decides on the latter version – going to a friend’s house – being more appropriate. The friend story line is supposed to deflect attention – investigative and otherwise – off him.
WATTS [Muttering]: …and…be with the kids. Take the kids over there.
This is another slip, another self-correction. Be with the kids makes no sense, and he corrects it because it’s uncomfortably close to the truth – that he wanted Shan’ann to be with the kids, away, in a grave. And that’s where she is.
Think of the sequence and the subconscious psychology in “be with the kids” versus Shan’ann “taking the kids over there” which she didn’t do. He took them over there.
JAMES: Oh, she told you she’s taking the kids to a friend’s house?
JAMES: She didn’t say who though?
WATTS: Yeah. Oh, no. No. [Shakes his head]. No, but she was still in bed when that happened.
This hand gesture, with his hand in a sort of claw, matches his original role-playing gesture in the cubicle at 18:04:56.