GREELEY, Colo. — Prosecutors in Weld County released a new set of documents in the case of Christopher Watts, who was recently sentenced to life in prison for murdering his pregnant wife and two young daughters.
The documents include video of the Watts home during investigators’ search, results of a polygraph test, security footage and Christopher Watts telling his father that he had killed his wife.
Shanann Watts, 34, and the couple’s two daughters — 4-year-old Bella and 3-year-old Celeste — were reported missing Aug. 13.
The body of Shanann Watts was recovered in a shallow grave near an oil tank. Court documents said the girls were found in an oil well in close proximity to their mother’s body.
Shortly after the documents were posted Thursday, the site containing them stopped working.
“We have determined that the reason why the bandwidth is so overloaded is because the link to this Sharefile has been posted to stories on websites today,” a Weld County District Attorney’s Office administrator said.
Early Friday morning, some of the videos were obtained, including the polygraph test of Christopher Watts and investigators going through the Watts home collecting evidence and testing a baby monitor.
The video shows Watts in a police interrogation room, preparing to take a polygraph test. The examiner tells him she will be able to tell whether or not he did it.
Watts is asked questions about his children, wife and their failing relationship.
Watts is calm and low-key in the interview as he explains how he came home and couldn’t find any trace of his family.
“Looked around the house, the car is there, car seats there, the purse is still there, phone is on the couch, there is no sign of Bella anywhere,” Christopher Watts is heard saying.
He failed the polygraph test.
In another video, Watts asked to see his father, Ronnie Watts, as he was being questioned by the Frederick Police Department.
Watts told his father that he had “freaked out” and killed his wife after a fight over plans to separate.
“Oh my God,” his father said, dropping his head into his hands.
After denying that he was involved, Christopher Watts is seen in a video telling his father that he killed his wife because he saw her smothering their two daughters to death.
“I freaked out … and did the same thing to her,” Watts told his father. “That’s just it … rage.”
However, prosecutors said he killed his pregnant wife and the two girls.
Christopher Watts also told detectives that he’d had an affair with a new woman and was no longer in love with his wife.
FOX31 watched some of the interrogation with James Allbee, a former detective who runs his own private investigations firm, Metro Intelligence Agency.
“Overall, I think they (the interrogators) did an amazing job to make that much progress. An hour is really not that much time. For them to get this kind of leverage and get this much movement in this interview, is pretty admirable,” Allbee said.
Allbee said the interrogators used a number of techniques to try to crack Watts, including the good-cop, bad-cop routine. They played to his ego and his fatherly side. They also seemed almost sympathetic, rubbing Watts’ back and shoulder after he confessed to killing Shanann.
The newly released video also contains body camera footage of police searching the Watts home. The only one they find inside is the family dog.
At the interrogation room, Watts tells the polygraph examiner that he’s very worried about his family.
“I just want to find them,” he is heard saying. “I want them to come home safe. Wherever they are, I hope they are safe. I really hope they can just come home.”
In a clip from a neighbor’s security camera, just hours after Watts killed his family, he backs his pickup truck into his driveway overnight and begins loading it.
All the time, he’s saying he just wants his family to come home.
“It’s going through my mind that someone took them and they’re not safe,” he says.
The latest information that was released, especially the video, was instrumental to the case.
“When you have video, it’s irrefutable,” said James Allbee, lead investigator with the Metro Intelligence Agency who spent 10 years working with local law enforcement agencies.
“There’s no way to come back and say that didn’t happen. Video is unbiased. It is what it is.”
Watts was sentenced Nov. 19 to three life sentences for the murders of his wife and daughters.
Last week, a separate large set of documents was released.