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Body language expert reveals exact moments Chris Watts gave himself away in police tapes
Featured Image Credit: discovery+ / Netflix

Body language expert reveals exact moments Chris Watts gave himself away in police tapes

Watts was later found guilty and received five life sentences.

A body language expert has revealed the moments Chris Watts' guilt showed in his behavior in various recordings.

On 13 August, 2018, Shanann Watts and her two children Bella and Celeste were brutally murdered - Shanann was pregnant at the time with her third child.

Her husband and the father of her children, Chris, was interrogated by police and initially denied any wrongdoing, but later confessed to the crimes and was sentenced to five life sentences without the possibility of parole.

The 38-year-old's since found himself the subject of multiple documentaries and one looks at how his body language showed signs of his guilt.

In the Discovery+ true-crime show Chris Watts: A Faking It Special, body language expert Dr Cliff Lansley points out the first sign of Watts' guilt.

It occurs during the police body camera footage recorded as officers visited his property scouring for clues.

In the clip, Watts can be seen 'swaying' and then doing a 'double-handed shrug' and also dropping the volume of his voice.

Dr Lansley analyses: "The swaying shows anxiety, so there's anxiety going on. He's making an affirmative claim that she was still here when I was here at 5:15am, but his hands are doing a partial gesture...

"So that small movement of the hands, the rotation, is what we call a double-handed shrug, which is part of the full gesture [of] 'I have no confidence in what I've just said'."

Shanann was pregnant when she was murdered.

The second tell-tale sign according to Dr Lansley occurs during footage from a CCTV camera of one of Watts' neighbors.

The clip sees him loading up his truck with what he later said was 'work equipment' but actually turned out to be the body of his wife.

In the CCTV recording, Watts can be seen covering his head with his hands, which Dr Lansley says is a gesture 'often linked to despair or anguish'.

But it's Watts' behavior during a televised appeal for his family to return which is most damning in Dr Lansley's view.

Watts pleaded guilty and received five life sentences.
Weld Country Sherrif’s, CO

Dr Lansley explains if you look at the dad's face in 'more detail with a close-up' you can see what his 'normal face' looks like 'during the non-emotional parts of the interview' on the left side.

She continues: "But on the right, when he says, 'I just want them back,' and he's talking about his children here, you see the lip corners raised. You see the eyes tighten. His cheeks are raised. This combination of these two muscles is an indicator of genuine pleasure."

At the end of the clip, Watts directly addresses the camera as if speaking to his wife and children and when he does, he 'slings out a left hand' like a 'hand shrug' but with 'rotation anti-clockwise'.

Dr Lansley resolves: "Now, a single hand shrug is not enough for a behavioural analyst to rely on, but when he closes his eyes for a full second, and you see a slight head shake when he's making the claim he wants them back, we've got a cluster of four behaviours which say there's nothing in this statement that you have confidence in, because it's not true."

You can watch Chris Watts: A Faking It Special on Discovery+ now.

If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence, contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.

Topics: Crime, Police, True crime, US News