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The Chilling Body Language That Gave Chris Watts Away In Police Bodycam Footage

The Chilling Body Language That Gave Chris Watts Away In Police Bodycam Footage

If you've watched Netflix's latest true crime documentary, American Family: The Murder Next Door, you'll have no doubt been left disgusted and horrified at the appalling crimes committed by murderer Chris Watts.

Watts brutally killed his entire family in August 2018 - wife Shanann Watts and daughters four-year-old Bella and three-year-old Celeste - before hiding their bodies in an oil tank.

When the police were first called to investigate their disappearance, Watts took on the role of a concerned and bereft father and husband, even appealing on camera for their safe return.

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He brutally murdered his entire family (Credit: Netflix)
He brutally murdered his entire family (Credit: Netflix)

But despite eventually admitting to the heinous crimes (after failing a lie detector test), body language experts have now revealed how Watts' suspicious behaviour was a clear sign of his guilt, way before he came clean.

Analysed by body language expert Derek Van Schaik, who discussed the documentary in a 40-minute YouTube video, Watts can first be seen arriving home to find police - as well as Shanann's friend Nickole - waiting at his front door.

Derek explains that instead of running straight into the house to look for his wife, Watts instead starts "dilly dallying" in Shanann's car, with Derek explaining: "It's very likely he did something that he thinks will help him cover his tracks".

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Derek says it's pretty suspicious how Watts was also in the house for over a minute before he let the police officer and Nickole in.

Watts was displaying suspicious behaviour (Credit: Derek Van Schaik/YouTube)
Watts was displaying suspicious behaviour (Credit: Derek Van Schaik/YouTube)

Once the police officer has searched the house to check for Shanann, Chris pretends to have found her mobile phone, with Derek explaining this is when "the performance really begins".

As Watts starts to recall his wife's whereabouts the night before and what time she came home, Shanann's friend Nickole enquires about checking the property's security system to see when she left the house.

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Watts immediately dismisses it, and Derek explains this behaviour is very typical of someone who is guilty.

"Chris is coming across very negative and not proactive. When we lose someone or something we really want back, even long shot ideas are worth trying," he explains.

Watts eventually admitted his crimes (Credit: Weld County Sheriffs Office)
Watts eventually admitted his crimes (Credit: Weld County Sheriffs Office)

Derek also goes on to compare the nervous behaviour displayed by Watts and the nervous behaviour displayed by Nickole.

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Both are deeply concerned and can be seen pacing up and down - but Derek explains how Watts' behaviour is directed inwards for himself, while Nickole's is directed outward because she's worried about Shanann.

And things went from bad to worse for Watts when his neighbour explains the only person who was seen leaving the house was him. While Nickole reacts to this frantically, Watts simply says "OK".

But perhaps the most telling behaviour is when the police officer immediately radios in to a colleague, and Watts appears to assume the officer was radioing in to arrest him. We can't believe we missed this while watching the doc!

He looked terrified when the officer radios in (Credit: Derek Van Schaik/YouTube)
He looked terrified when the officer radios in (Credit: Derek Van Schaik/YouTube)
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Later on, Watts can be seen looking through footage with the police officer and one of his neighbours.

Derek explains this will be the first time he had seen footage of himself covering up his brutal crime - and he looks away, as he can't bear to carry watching.

Instead, he looks toward the door, indicating he wants to escape the situation.

You can watch Derek's fascinating full analysis here, or if you're yet to watch, you can catch the documentary in full over on Netflix.

Featured Image Credit: Netflix

Topics: TV News, Netflix

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Lucy Devine

Lucy is a journalist working for Tyla. After graduating with a master's degree in journalism, she has worked in both print and online and is particularly interested in fashion, food, health and women's issues. Northerner, coffee addict, says hun a lot. Get in touch at [email protected]