The Disturbing Path to Family Annihilation of Chris Watts 

In Short

  • Chris Watts killed the Watts family in Frederick, Colorado, on August 13, 2018. Their children Bella and Celeste were smothered, and his pregnant wife Shanann strangled. The remains deposited in crude oil tanks garnered media attention and disturbed public consciousness.
  • Chris Watts’s marriage and finances were problematic before the murders. The Watts family declared bankruptcy in 2015 despite appearances. Watts and Shanann divorced due to his extramarital affairs. Watts’ claim of falling out of love and wanting separation influenced the murders.
  • Chris Watts claimed innocence and publicly begged for the family’s release after their kidnapping. On August 15, 2018, a polygraph test revealed Shanann and his kids’ murder. While Watts blamed Shanann, his admission told the crimes were planned.
  • On November 6, 2018, Watts pled guilty to avoid execution. He received three life sentences without parole and 84 years on linked offences. After being sacked from Anadarko Petroleum, he was convicted of murder and condemned to life in Dodge Correctional Institution in Wisconsin.

Christopher Lee Watts appeared to be a typical Frederick, Colorado family man. He was born on May 16, 1985. He faced tragedy in August 2018 after killing the Watts family, which made him a notorious serial murderer. Before the tragedy, Watts lived with his wife Shanann and their two daughters, Celeste and Bella. This lovely family portrait hid money issues, infidelity, and marital turmoil. Chris Watts was an Anadarko Petroleum oil field operator, and Shanann conducted her .

The Watts family suffered financial and personal problems while looking well off. Shanann and the girls disappeared in August 2018, shattering normality. This led to a scary investigation into Christopher Watts’ dark secrets. During the investigation, Chris Watts moved from claims of innocence to a shocking confession. His brutal murder of his two young daughters and the disposal of their bodies in crude oil tanks added to his long list of crimes, which included the death of his pregnant wife, Shanann. The Watts family murders shocked the nation and made people think about family, ties, and the possibility of unimaginable cruelty in a seemingly typical home.

 About Christopher Lee Watts

Attribute Details
Full Name Christopher Lee Watts
Date of Birth May 16, 1985
Place of Birth Spring Lake, North Carolina, U.S.
Age 38
Status Incarcerated at Dodge Correctional Institution
Spouse Shanann Rzucek (married in 2012; murdered in 2018)
Children Bella Marie Watts (December 17, 2013 – August 13, 2018) Celeste “CeCe” Watts (July 17, 2015 – August 13, 2018) Nico Watts (unborn, killed with Shanann)
Date Apprehended August 15, 2018
Convictions – First-degree murder (5 counts) – Unlawful termination of a – Tampering with a deceased human body (3 counts)
Verdict Pleaded guilty
Sentence Three consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole plus 84 years
Employment Oil field operator at Anadarko Petroleum
Residence 2825 Saratoga Trail, Frederick, Colorado
Financial Status Declared bankruptcy in 2015
Marriage Married Shanann in 2012
Infidelity Engaged in an extramarital affair
Motivation for Crime Claims of a falling out of love, requested separation, and alleged confrontation with Shanann
Legal Proceedings – Arrested on August 15, 2018 – Pleaded guilty on November 6, 2018 – Sentenced on November 19, 2018
Current Incarceration Location Dodge Correctional Institution, Waupun, Wisconsin


Christopher Lee Watts and Shanann Cathryn Rzucek were reared in Spring Lake and Aberdeen, respectively. On November 3, 2012, they married after meeting in 2010. They lived in 2825 Saratoga Trail, Frederick, CO, a five-bedroom house they acquired in 2013. The family appeared in control, but financial issues left them bankrupt in 2015. Christopher was an Anadarko Petroleum employee, while Shanann sold “Thrive” items for “Le-Vel,” an MLM company. Financial problems tragically weakened the couple’s bond. Watts attended Pine Forest High School in Fayetteville, North Carolina, throughout his youth. Although little is known about his early life, it looked average until he moved to Colorado and worked in oil.

Marriage to Shanann Rzucek

Watts met Aberdeen, North Carolina native Shanann Cathryn Rzucek in 2010. Their romance led to their Mecklenburg County wedding on November 3, 2012. Shanann, born January 10, 1984, was energetic and enterprising.

Mystery and Missing People

Shanann and her two daughters went missing during a business trip on August 13, 2018. Shanann missed appointments and ignored messages, causing problems. The Frederick Police Department checked on Watts at home after she disappeared. Even though he denied wrongdoing, Christopher Watts’s mask came off during a polygraph test on August 15, 2018. He admitted to strangling Shanann and their children, as captured by CCTV cameras. Bella and Celeste’s bodies were put into crude oil tanks, while Shanann was buried in a shallow grave near an oil storage facility. The murder was horrific.

Legal Proceedings

Watts was arrested on many counts of first-degree murder, unlawful abortion, and corpse tampering. His company, Anadarko Petroleum, fired him promptly. Shanann, Bella, and Celeste’s corpses were found at Anadarko Petroleum’s leased oil storage facility on August 16, 2018. Chris Watts’s defence team first claimed that Shanann strangled the kids because he had requested a separation, which prompted his awful crime. Watts’ admission that the crime was planned ruined this tale. The case illuminated the rare crime of family disintegration, which generally ends in suicide.

Plea Deal and Sentencing

Christopher Lee Watts

Watts pleaded guilty on November 6, 2018, avoiding death. Shanann’s family backed his five life sentences without parole on November 19. Along with 48 years for illegally terminating Shanann’s pregnancy, he received 36 years for tampering with her remains. Watts began serving his sentence on December 5, 2018, after being moved to Dodge Correctional Institution in Waupun, Wisconsin. Security prompted this move.


Chris Watts has no net worth because he is estimated to owe over $6 million. Colorado-based Watts famously killed his family in 2018. Before the accident, he had worked for Anadarko Petroleum for six months as an oil field operator, earning $60,000. Their home-based MLM enterprise, run by his wife Shanann, helped the family make money. The Watts family had a huge mortgage and $70,000 in debt when the killings happened, despite earning $90,000 in 2014. Financial issues are causing family problems.


The Watts family murders and Chris Watts’ story are horrifying reminders of the vulnerability of seemingly ordinary lives. Solving this horrible crime revealed a once-promising family’s flaws. Watts’ crimes destroyed family purity and killed his helpless wife and children. Money issues, infidelity, and the negative ramifications of unresolved disputes intersect in the scenario. As our nation mourns the Watts family killings, it is a sobering reminder of the far-reaching repercussions that long-standing issues may have, even in a family home.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is Chris Watts?

American Chris Watts is notorious for the 2018 Watts family killings. In Frederick, Colorado, he killed his pregnant wife Shanann and their two kids, Bella and Celeste.

What were the motives behind the Watts family murders?

Watts requested separation from Shanann, citing marital issues. He said Shanann strangled the children in reaction, driving him to conduct the horrible actions in wrath. Later, his confession showed a more calculated crime.

What was Chris Watts’ occupation?

Anadarko Petroleum employed Chris Watts as an oil field operator in Colorado before the killings. He worked there for six months before the tragedy.

What is Chris Watts’ current legal status?

Chris Watts pled guilty to various offenses, including first-degree murder, and is serving three life terms without parole and extra years for related charges. His prison is Dodge Correctional Institution in Wisconsin.

Did the Watts family struggle financially?

The Watts family had a large mortgage and $70,000 in debt at the time of the killings. Financial stress contributed to the family’s troubles.

What is the aftermath of the Watts family murders?

Media coverage has included documentaries, interviews, and adaptations of the disaster. It warns about domestic troubles and the dangers of unsolved disagreements.

Has Chris Watts shown remorse for his actions?

Chris Watts professed sorrow in court, but his actions and the horrible crime have shaped public view. His earlier attempts to blame Shanann before admitting complicated the case.