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I Watched ‘American Murder, The Family Next Door’, So You Don’t Have To

I usually love True Crime. I think I have watched every single True Crime documentary or docuseries on Netflix, and I’m always looking for the next True Crime show.

I’m not going to lie, though. This Netflix Original True Crime Documentary, American Murder, was hard to watch. I mean, it is about a pregnant woman and her two young daughters that go missing, and (spoiler alert) are eventually found to be dead.

Courtesy of Netflix

And, this isn’t a made up story. This actually happened, in 2018, in Frederick, Colorado, to a family just like the one next door to you. Heck, it could be YOUR family.

American Murder, The Family Next Door is about the Watts family. You might have heard about them in the news not too long ago. In fact, odds are, you heard a TON about this story. It was ALL over the news at the time.

Shan’ann Watts was a wife and mother, just trying to hustle and earn a living for her family via Social Media as part of a MLM company.

Courtesy of Netflix

She was pregnant with her third child — a boy, whom had already been named Nikko. Her daughter’s Bella and Celeste were 4 years old and 3 years old, respectively.

But, then there was Christopher Watts. He was the husband of Shan’ann and the daddy to Bella and Celeste.

Courtesy of Netflix

He is also a horrible, horrible human being.

You see, Christopher was having an affair on his unsuspecting wife, so what did he do to get Shan’ann out of the picture? Yep. He murdered her, her unborn son, and her two little girls.

But, of course, Christopher didn’t just go and admit he killed them. He lead people to believe that Shan’ann had left him — or maybe she was taken by someone else?

Police went and canvassed the area, handing out flyers to the local community, begging for any information on the missing mom and her two girls.

Shan’ann’s best friend was the very first to have an inkling that something wasn’t right. She notified police that Shan’ann was not answering her phone, and she couldn’t get ahold of her.

There was a neighbor, that told police very early on, that Christopher wasn’t acting right at all.

But, the kicker came when Christopher agreed to take a polygraph test. Which, I mean, was a STUPID move to make, if you just offed your wife and kids.

Of course, he didn’t pass the lie-detector test, and he eventually ended up confessing to the murders.

Y’all, it gets worse. He buried Shan’ann in a shallow grave at his remote work site, after strangling her to death. But, the girls — the girls he smothered with their blankies, and stuck them down inside two very large oil drums.

And, knowing what he had done, later that day, he lead police to believe the girls had “taken their blankies” and left the house with their mom. No remorse. No regret.

He is a sick, sick individual.

Chris was eventually sentenced to five life sentences without the possibility of parole — after he made a plea to avoid the death penalty.

That is the very condensed version of American Murder. If you have very small children, I probably wouldn’t watch. It is a hard story to get through, knowing the outcome of his sick actions.

If you are triggered by horrendous acts of violence, I would also avoid watching. There is no blood, but there is talk of how, exactly, Christopher went about his task.

If you are wanting a good True Crime documentary, one that sucks you in, gets you to know the characters, and then actually ends up being a solved case, you might appreciate this show.

I’ll go ahead and tell you, have tissue with you. They do a REALLY good job of getting to know Shan’ann and the girls, and it is simply devastating what happens to them. I cried.

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