Pleads guilty

Christopher Watts pleads guilty in deaths of pregnant wife, two daughters

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Soon after, his wife’s body was discovered in a shallow grave on property owned by Watts’ former employer, Anadarko Petroleum.

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JUST IN: A Colorado man charged with killing his pregnant wife and two daughters has pleaded guilty under a plea deal that will allow him to avoid the death penalty.

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Rourke said he and another prosecutor visited Shanann Watts' family in North Carolina last month to discuss the odds of a death penalty sentence being carried out.

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The Weld County district attorney charged Watts with the following counts on august 20: RELATED: Full coverage of the murders of Shannan Watts and her daughters

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Christopher Watts, 33, pleaded guilty to all nine counts against him — including five counts of first-degree murder — in the deaths of his wife, Shanann Watts, and their daughters, Bella, 4, and Celeste, 3, whose bodies were found on the property of an oil and gas company where Christopher Watts worked in August, according to a press release from Colorado's 19th Judicial District.

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Prosecutors think that Watts killed his wife and daughters inside their home in Frederick, Colorado, before dumping their bodies.

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Christopher Watts admits he murdered his pregnant wife and their two little girls, who went missing in August.

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Christopher Watts initially claimed to police after he was arrested that he killed Shanann Watts after she killed their daughters, according to court documents.

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WELD COUNTY, Colo. -- Christopher Watts, the Frederick man accused of killing his wife and young daughters, pleaded guilty to murder, the judge said on Tuesday.

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He entered his plea Tuesday during a court hearing, replying "guilty" nine times in response to Judge Marcelo Kopcow's reading of each charge against him in the deaths of Shanann Watts, 34, and their children, Bella, 4, and Celeste, 3.

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Rourke said at a press conference that the plea deal was made with the support of Shanann Watts’ family, and after he explained what he called the "extraordinary delays that currently exist" in Colorado in putting prisoners to death.

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The plea deal includes a sentencing agreement that Christopher Watts will be sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison, Weld County District Attorney Michael Rourke said.

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His wife, Shanann Watts, 34, was reported missing back in August, along with the couple’s two daughters, Bella, 4, and Celeste, 3.

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Politics and justice intersect on Election Day with the guilty plea of Christopher Watts for killing his family in Frederick. DA Michael Rourke says he briefed victims’ family that @hickforco won’t carry out a death sentence and future governors might not either. #9News

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Shanann Watts' family members "were very strongly in favor of a resolution in this case short of the death penalty," Rourke said.

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With the agreement of the victims’ family, the district attorney eliminated the death penalty from consideration in exchange for Watts’ guilty plea to all nine counts.

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