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‘I just want him to fight’: Parents of Chris Watts question plea deal in murders of wife, daughters

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Posted at 3:15 PM, Nov 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-14 10:33:29-05

(KMGH/CNN) - The parents of a Colorado man who pleaded guilty to killing his pregnant wife and two children are speaking out for the first time.

Chris Watts pleaded guilty last week to nine counts to avoid the death penalty.

Watts' parents Ronnie and Cindy Watts said they haven’t spoken to or seen their son since his time in court.

“We got to see him one time that Monday before the plea deal, and that was it,” said Ronnie Watts, his father.

When asked how Chris Watts killed his wife Shanann and the two children, Ronnie Watts said: "he said he did the same thing that she did to him, that she did to the girls."

His parents went into detail about the relationship problems Shanann and Chris Watts allegedly had but more importantly, spoke about the frustrations with their son’s plea.

The parents said they are livid with the attorneys who represented their son.

"Yes, I am. I am absolutely frustrated," said Cindy Watts.

Chris Watts’ public defender declined to comment for this story.

Cindy Watts believes her son was coerced into taking a deal.

“I don’t know. I don’t know. To me, all they wanted to do was save his life just to save his life. Save his life and life in prison to me, there’s no difference. He’s going to die in prison and there’s no telling what will be done to him in prison. And I just want him to fight. I want him to not take this plea deal. I want him to plead not guilty to the children.”

The Watts are looking into different legal avenues even looking at another attorney in Denver to take up their son’s case.

There’s been some reaction about all this from Shanann’s family. Her family’s attorney responded with a statement.

"Their false statements, however hurtful and inaccurate, will never alter the truth about Shanann, and will never alter the truth about the crimes committed by their son,” the statement said. “Her memory and reputation deserve to be protected, and her family is fully prepared to do so."

But Donnie and Cindy Watts didn’t seem concerned about backlash for defending their son.

“I just want to make sure he’s doing the right thing,” said Ronnie Watts.

His wife offered a similar sentiment.

"Yes," Cindy said. "I mean, if he didn't kill the children, I want him to face that and let them prove it."

A longtime friend of both Shanann and Chris Watts who saw the interview said both families are hurting. The friend said they hope that he doesn’t continue to fight the case and go to trial.

“I didn’t want them to just save his life or to have life in prison. I wanted him to have a defense. There was a defense there,” Cindy Watts said.

Copyright 2018 KMGH via CNN. All rights reserved.