More details are emerging from the horrific night that Chris Watts murdered his pregnant wife and two daughters thanks to letters he wrote to an outside pen pal while in jail. Cheryln Cadle is a 65-year-old grandmother from Illinois who began exchanging letters with Watts after his conviction and sentencing. She has since compiled these letters in a new book and reveals some chilling details that Watts didn't reveal during his trial.
Cadle released some of the letters that will be featured in her new book, Letters from Christopher, to the Daily Mail, and in one of them, Watts revealed that his first attempt to kill his daughters Bella and Celeste was unsuccessful. "August 13th, morning of, I went to the girls' room first, before Shanann and I had our argument. I went to Bella's room, then Cece's room and used a pillow from their bed (to kill them)," Watts wrote in a letter. "That's why the cause of death was smothering. After I left Cece's room, then I climbed back in bed with Shanann and our argument ensued," the letter continued.
"After Shanann had passed, Bella and Cece woke back up. I'm not sure how they woke back up, but they did," he wrote. "Bella's eyes were bruised and both girls looked like they had been through trauma. That made the act that much worse knowing I went to their rooms first and knowing I still took their lives at the location of the batteries."
Watts also hinted in his letters to Cadle that the murder of his pregnant wife Shan'ann and his daughters wasn't as spontaneous as he originally told investigators. Watts claimed he 'snapped' after having an argument with Shan'ann where she allegedly told him he wouldn't see his children, and he strangled her in a fit of rage. But in one of his letters, he seemed to suggest that he had been planning the murders ahead of time.
"August 12th when I finished putting the girls to bed, I walked away and said ''That's the last time I'm going to be tucking my babies in.'' I knew what was going to happen the day before and I did nothing to stop it!" he wrote. He also told Cadle that he had given Shan'ann Oxycodone at least once in hopes of causing her to have a miscarriage. " I thought it would be easier to be with Nichol if Shanann wasn't pregnant," he wrote.
Watts then goes on in gruesome detail how he strangled Shan'ann to death and disposed of her bodies and the bodies of his daughter's. He wrote that as he was struggling with his wife's body and trying to load it in his vehicle, "The girls were just kind of running around the house and watching me with scared looks on their faces. Bella started to cry and when she did Celeste started whimpering. What a nightmare this was."
Cadle told the Daily Mail that Watts gave her permission to publish the letters in her book in exchange for his "testimony of coming to God and the forgiveness he received".
It is Christopher’s responsibility to inform his family. It is not a legal obligation that Ms. Cadle was inclined to fulfill, as this was a contract between only Christopher and Ms. Cadle. The crime itself is part of his story. pic.twitter.com/03vMqhqrNB— Letters From Christopher (@lettersfrmwatts) September 28, 2019
The book, Letters From Christopher: The Tragic Confessions of the Watts Family Murders is currently available. Christopher Watts is serving three consecutive life sentences and two more concurrent life sentences as well as three 12-year sentences for separate accounts of tampering with a deceased human body in the murders of his pregnant wife and two daughters in a Wisconsin prison where he is on 23-hour lockdown.