Frank Rzucek, the father of Shanann Watts, the woman who was strangled to death by her husband before he murdered their two young daughters, is asking for the cyberbullying and harassment his family has endured since the murders to simply stop. In a statement the grieving father gave on Monday, he speaks about the "horrible, cruel abuse and outright bullying on a daily basis" that his family has endured.
"I don't want to draw more attention to the vile material that has been posted online, and so I won’t go into specifics. But I will say that our family, including Shanann and our grandchildren, have been ridiculed, demeaned, slandered and mocked, in the most vicious ways you can imagine," he said as he read a statement outside of the Colorado home his daughter shared with her husband, Chris Watts. "This is so wrong. It is cruel. It is heartless."
Rzucek added that the entire family has been targeted since his daughter's murder at the hands of her husband. "We have been subjected to wild false allegations, fake Facebook accounts, hate speech and a constant stream of ugly, evil insults and attacks," Rzucek said during his statement. "Every time we turn around, there is someone trying to capitalize on our tragedy by spreading false rumors and outright lies about Shanann and our grandchildren." He also added the constant attacks and harassment online have prevented his family from properly grieving their daughter, unborn grandson, and granddaughters.
Rzucek also made a call to action during his statement, asking social media platforms to do more to protect the victims of cyberbullying and try to put a stop to those who are hiding behind their computers while attacking others. "We are calling on you to do something, to pass laws that will protect victims of unspeakable crimes from this kind of abuse," he said. "To online social media sites like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter – we have contacted you many times reporting this abuse, but to no avail. We are calling on you again to do the right thing, to take some responsibility for your platforms, and to stop this despicable conduct."
The family has asked that if people feel the need to talk about the case or report on it, to simply stick to the facts. "It is painful enough for us just dealing with reality – reading the insane conspiracy theories, the ugly false rumors, the lies, only makes it more painful."
Chris Watts is currently serving three consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole for the death of Shannan, Bella, and Celeste, as well as two more concurrent life sentences for first-degree murder by a person in a position of trust for the murder of his daughters, and three 12-year sentences for separate accounts of tampering with a deceased human body, according to The Denver Channel.