The friend who reported murdered Colorado woman Shanann Watts missing before she and her two little girls were found dead last week, says she was “not shocked” the woman’s husband was arrested in connection to the shocking crimes.
Nickole Atkinson, who dropped the pregnant mother home on Monday last week following a business trip, said she knew something was not right when her friend’s husband Christopher Watts appeared unconcerned his family was missing.
“He was defending himself, but it just didn’t make sense. Like in that moment it is kind of surreal,” Ms Atkinson told Good Morning America a week after Mrs Watts, 34, and her two young daughters Celeste, 3, and Bella, 4 seemingly vanished.
“He was just sitting there waiting for something to happen; it just didn’t seem right to me.”
Ms Atkinson added that she wasn’t “shocked” when Watts, 33, was arrested in connection with his family’s murder a few days later.
Ms Atkinson said she dropped Mrs Watts off at her home in Frederick, Colorado, after a business trip at around 2am Monday last week. When she didn’t hear back from her friend later that day, and realised she had missed a doctor’s appointment, the friend alerted authorities.
She told Good Morning America she was likely the last person, other than the accused, to have seen the murdered mum alive.
On Thursday police said they had discovered the bodies of Mrs Watts and her two daughters on a property owned by Anadarko Petroleum Corp, where her husband worked. The woman’s body was found in a shallow grave and the children’s bodies were found in nearby oil tanks, according to court documents.
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“It was one of my worst nightmares. I didn’t know what to say or do,” Mrs Atkinson said of hearing the tragic news.
“I sat on our bed for, I don’t know how long, and didn’t move because I didn’t want to think that they weren’t coming back.”
Colorado prosecutors set to charge husband for murdering family
Colorado prosecutors said they plan to formally file murder charges on Monday (local time) against Watts, accused of killing his wife and their two young daughters, days after he told police they went missing and pleaded on TV for their safe return.
Watts has been held without bond in the Weld County jail since his arrest last week for the murders.
Weld County District Attorney Michael Rourke will formally file charges against Watts within hours and seek the release of an arrest affidavit, which has been under seal, that lays out details of the crime, his spokeswoman Krista Henery said in a telephone interview.
Neither Watts, nor his court-appointed attorney, have commented on the incident since his arrest.
Authorities have not confirmed local media reports that Watts confessed to killing his family, or speculation that he strangled the two girls.