Tag Archives: heartbreaking

Discovery File from Chris Watts Case

I have fallen down the Chris Watts family annihilator rabbit hole. Over the last week, I’ve read books, watched documentaries, read articles, listened to various podcasts and over the past three days I read the discovery file. All 1960 pages of it.

Obviously, we (the public) will never truly know what happened, why it happened, how it happened, etc. but reading the discovery file… which is every report, every interview, transcripts of texts/messages, copies of pretty much every piece of evidence involved in this case, was heartbreaking.

As I was reading posts regarding Watts, and whether he actually committed the murder, and if he did, did he act alone; I have read several discussions (that got pretty intense) where people have speculated and made assumptions all across the board.

He admitted to killing his pregnant wife, Shanann, and daughters, Bella and Celeste. He admitted it. He gave several different versions of his confession, but all of the evidence literally points to Watts as the killer. He brutally murdered his beautiful family, and cruelly disposed of them. There isn’t anything to debate here, in my opinion. The man is a monster, and he is where he should be… in prison for the rest of his life, without the possibility of parole.

I am not completely convinced that he acted alone, however. I believe 100% that he and he alone, murdered and disposed of Shanann, Bella and Celeste. But after reading the things I’ve read, and finding out from Watts himself, via “Letters from Christopher, that he drugged Shanann (once in NC to attempt to induce a miscarriage) and having the question “where did you get the 80 mg oxycodone?” And his answer being, “that will be something I take to my grave.”, definitely leads me to think perhaps his girlfriend provided the oxy. In the discovery file, there are so many questionable Google searches that the girlfriend did, and then deleted, that just leads me to think maybe she was more involved than either (Watts or his gf) claimed.

My heart absolutely breaks for the Rzucek family. They have not only lost a daughter and sister, and their grandchildren in one of the most devastating ways possible… but this poor family is being subjected to harassment, bullying, slanderous statements (written and verbal), insensitive and inappropriate videos on YouTube, etc., on top of attempting to heal. How we can be so disgustingly cruel to a grieving family is beyond me. The Rzucek family is attempting to create Shanann’s Law (I am still researching) and I think that is very brave, in the light of all they are dealing with.

There is a documentary on Netflix, American Murder: The Family Next Door, that was done in collaboration with the Rzucek family. The family was consulted and involved in every aspect, so they were able to ensure Shanann got to tell her story.

This case is ugly. It’s heavy, it’s so sad… and it didn’t have to happen. Watts literally could have filed for divorce. He could have just walked away. He could have ended his affair with his girlfriend, and actually tried rebuilding his marriage with Shanann. But instead, he chose to kill his pregnant wife, Shanann, and their two beautiful daughters, Bella and Celeste. Instead, he chose to completely destroy two families.

If you are like me, and have fallen down the rabbit hole with this case; all I ask is that you are kind. Kind towards both families (Rzucek and Watts), to all of Shanann’s friends, and to each other as you discuss and debate your opinions.

To wrap this tragic post, I will say: Nickole Atkinson is a damn hero. She is the friend we all deserve, and the friend we should all strive to be. Be an advocate for your loved ones. Be adamant. Be pushy. Be loud.

The Perfect Father: The True Story of Chris Watts, his All-American Family, and a Shocking Murder by John Glatts

Trigger warning: this book contains graphic descriptions of smothering and concealment of dead bodies, including children.

This was heavy. And incredibly sad. I was fairly knowledgeable able this case, having followed it during the trial and watch documentaries about it. But reading the details of what Chris Watts did to him pregnant wife and daughters… wow. That man is a cold blooded monster. Nothing can be said to justify his actions.
This book was very well written, the details were handled with care and I feel as though everyone involved was given a fair and unbiased depiction.
My heart absolutely breaks for the families on both sides of this case. In situations like this… no one comes out okay. And this book definitely made that clear. Tragic and utterly heartbreaking, the story of Chris Watts, family annihilator, will make you sick to your stomach. Reading the details of this case will absolutely break your heart, make you angry, and leave you in complete disbelief… how can a father do the things this man did? How can a father murder his babies, with his own hands, and then go on camera pretending to plead for their safe return? Nothing within these pages is comforting. Nothing within the details of this case make sense or are justified. This is a devastating account of the tragedies that occurred. Read at your own will, this book is incredibly heavy.

John Glatt did an incredibly good job writing this book. He presented the facts of the case, and offered everyone involved a fair and unbiased opportunity to be seen and heard. It could not have been an easy task, writing this. Especially since so much of this case was so public. It was a hard book to read, but it was very well written and put together in a way that seems very factual. For the writing alone, I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.

Find The Perfect Father: The True Story of Chris Watts, his All-American Family, and a Shocking Murder by John Glatts on Amazon

Netflix Documentary

Trigger warning: This documentary contains content that involves murder and extramarital relationships. If you are sensitive to this type of content, this may not be the documentary for you

American Murder: The Family Next Door (Netflix documentary)


I think it is safe to assume we have all heard about Chris Watts, family annihilator. If you are not familiar with this case, you can get a synopsis here.

This documentary is heavy. I was familiar with this case before I watched this specific documentary on Netflix. I remember when this happened, but I also watched Family Man, Family Murderer: An ID Murder Mystery (available on Hulu). But watching this doc, and seeing so many home videos, photos and reading text messages that Shanann sent to Chris, and others in her life, was absolutely devastating. Chris agreed to take a polygraph test, and he failed. The officer told him prior to starting the polygraph that he would be very stupid to take this test if he had anything to do with the disappearance of his wife and daughters. He agreed, and took the test. He failed. Even during the test, the examiner told him she needed him to regulate his breathing because his vitals were all over the place. He failed. When the examiner and another officer came into the room to let him know he failed, he still maintained and promised he had nothing to do with the disappearance of his wife and kids. He swore up and down he was innocent. The officers weren’t having it, and kept pushing him to tell the truth. Chris asked if he could talk to his dad, finally getting emotional. His dad is brought into the room, and they start talking. Mind you, this room is under full surveillance (video and audio). His dad asks what is going on, and Chris mentions that he failed the polygraph. His dad says something about it being because he is too upset, and Chris just says “they know”. After a brief silence, Chris says Shanann killed the girls, smothered them, so he did the same to her. That he just lost control after seeing what she did to their children. Chris then changes his story from he had nothing to do with their disappearance, to Shanann smothered the children, and he killed her after seeing what she had done.


This doc shows a lot of conversations Shanann had with a friend, regarding concerns she had about her marriage. She expressed concern that things were tense between her and Chris, that he was being weird and rejecting her when it came to having sexual relations. She said several times that the only reason she could think of as to why he wouldn’t want to have sex with her, is if he was getting it somewhere else. She said “…even if he hated me… sex is sex.” She confronted Chris about having an affair, and he adamantly denied it. Chris told the detectives the same thing, that he never cheated on his wife. Turns out, Chris was in a relationship with a co-worker, Nichol Kessinger. She (Nichol) claims she knew he had children, but that he (Chris) had told her he was in the process of separating from his wife. The documentary moves fairly quickly from the interrogation, to his arrest, to his trial and sentencing.

Chris took a plea deal, pleading guilty to the first degree murder of his wife, Shanann, daughters Bella and CeCe, and unborn son, Niko (Shanann was 15 weeks pregnant when she was murdered) in exchange for the death penalty being off the table. Chris Watts was convicted of all murders, and was sentenced to five life sentences – three consecutive and two concurrent – without the possibility of parole. He received an additional 48 years for the unlawful termination of his wife’s pregnancy and 36 years for three charges of tampering with a deceased body.

So the truth finally came out. Chris Watts murdered his family, because he wanted a fresh start. He wanted to build a life with his girlfriend (Nichol Kessinger). He brutally murdered his pregnant wife and two daughters in cold blood. The man is an absolute monster.

This documentary was heartbreaking. Watching home videos of Bella and CeCe, smiling, laughing, clearly adoring their daddy… knowing he smothered them and attempted to dispose of their little bodies in an oil well. He shoved their bodies in an 8″ opening at the top of an oil well located at one of his job sites. This is a hard documentary to watch, even knowing what happened before watching the doc. Seeing this man acting like he had no idea where his family had gone, and his pathetic pleading on the news… his interrogation video. We see so much of this case, right out in the open. It is so hard to watch, so hard to hear… so hard knowing this happened for absolutely no reason. My heart broke watching these sweet babies sing a song about how daddy is a hero… knowing what he did to them. This is a hard documentary to watch. It is a lot of brutal details to swallow. This is the absolute worst part of humanity. No matter how prepared you think you are for this case… I promise you, it will absolutely break your heart.

I also learned today, that Chris Watts had been corresponding with someone, and he has given her permission to compile a book using the letters. I have ordered the book, because supposedly he tells the entire truth about what he did that night. I want to read what he writes, though honestly, I will never believe a word that comes out of that monster’s mouth.

If you are going to watch this documentary, please be forewarned that is is absolutely devastating.