Colorado father pleads guilty allowing him to avoid the death penalty

Colorado father pleads guilty allowing him to avoid the death penalty

A Colorado man, Chris Watts, has pleaded guilty to killing his pregnant wife and daughters.

Christopher Watts, 33, admitted in Weld County District Court to strangling his wife, Shanann, 34, and the couple's two daughters, Celeste, 3, and Bella, 4, in August at the family's home in Frederick, about 30 miles (48 km) north of Denver.

Watts claimed Shanann had killed one daughter and was actively trying to kill the other when he attacked her in an act of passion.

Taking a stab at Colorado governor John Hickenlooper, who had repeatedly opposed the execution of another death row inmate Nathan Dunlap, Rourke said: 'We explained to them the extraordinary delays that now exist in the state of Colorado as a result of in part the actions of our current governor.

As the judge read each charge one by one, Watts pleaded "guilty", his voice sometimes cracking.

"I was not willing to entertain any further concessions above and beyond removing the death penalty", he said. Watts told investigators he "went into a rage" and strangled his wife, then dumped all three bodies at the oil field owned by a company he had worked for.

It's alleged he drove their bodies to an oil site, and police said the girls' bodies were found in an oil tank while his wife's body was found in a shallow grave.

'That to me was the most important consideration in deciding how to proceed in this a case. The District Attorney's Office said the family might make a statement at a later date, but they are asking for privacy at this time.

As part of the sentencing agreement, Watts will spend the rest of his life in prison for the first-degree murder charges.

Nevertheless, Mrs Watts had written upbeat social media posts about her daughters, pregnancy and love for her husband not long before she died.

'I do not want to be in the position of choosing to take his'.

"That's about as firmly as she could have said it to me".

During the plea hearing on Tuesday, he said the falsehood that Shannan killed the children was corrected.

Rourke said he hoped the agreement would bring some measure of closure for the family, who were present during the court hearing and the press conference.

"I know that that will never be fully realized because, obviously, the tragedy that sits before us today is the loss of four attractive lives".

A memorial outside the home of Shanann Watts in Colorado.

According to People, the source said, Watts was furious at having to enter the guilty plea.

"The spotlight he tried to shine on Shanann, falsely, incorrectly.is now shined correctly on him", Rourke said.

His sentencing is scheduled for November 19.

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