Man admits to killing his pregnant wife and two daughters
Man admits to killing his pregnant wife and two daughters
Christopher Watts: Colorado man pleads guilty in killings of pregnant wife, Shannon Watts, and young daughter
07 November, 2018, 16:29
A man accused of murdering his pregnant wife and two young daughters has pleaded guilty in court.
Christopher Watts, 33, pleaded guilty to five counts of murder in the first degree, one count of unlawful termination of a pregnancy and three counts of tampering with a deceased human body during a court hearing in Colorado on Tuesday.
Watts told detectives he was having an affair, according to an arrest warrant affidavit, and that he had loaded the bodies of his wife and daughters into his work truck and taken them to an oil field.
At a news conference on Tuesday, Weld County District Attorney Michael Rourke called Watts' story "a flat-out lie" and said he deserved a life sentence for each of the nine counts to which he had pleaded guilty.
Rourke blamed Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper for refusing to allow executions while he is in office.
His wife was buried there and the girls were submerged in crude oil, with their remains found by police who used a drone to search areas identified by Watts. "That's about as firmly as she could have said it to me".
Sentencing will begin for the other crimes on November 19.
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"I don't know how I could have sat in Sandy (Rzucek)'s kitchen and asked her to commit the next 25 years of her life of the criminal justice system", Rourke said.
During the plea hearing on Tuesday, he said the falsehood that Shannan killed the children was corrected.
Shanann Watts' mother, father and brother were in court but chose not to speak with the media.
Under Colorado law, a first-degree murder conviction carries a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole.
The decision not to seek death was made about four days ago - a choice that left Shan'ann's loved ones feeling "a combination of relief, extraordinary sadness that we ever had to have that conversation in the first place", Rourke said, "and I can only say that I hope there is a sense of closure".
"That, to me, was the most important consideration in deciding how to proceed with this case", Rourke said.
'No one wins today. "The spotlight shines directly where it belongs, on him".
Still, he cautioned: Though the family was present for Chris' plea and the subsequent presser, they were "not prepared nor do they want to answer questions at this point".
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