Colorado killings: Husband arrested after wife and two children found dead

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He's expected to be formally charged by Monday. Court documents filed by defense lawyer James Merson said the girls had been submerged in crude oil for four days.

In a second motion, obtained by KDVR, defense attorneys asked the court to compel the coroner's office to look for DNA under the mother's fingernails and on her hands. Eikelenboomhas testified in several high-profile criminal trials, often on so-called "touch DNA" when small samples of genetic material are left on a surface.

It wasn't immediately clear if the judge ruled on the motions. The first motion was filed 20 minutes before the autopsies were scheduled to begin, documents show. The expert did not recommend and the defense attorney did not request a DNA sample from the mother's neck.

Shanann Watts' body was found on the oil and gas company land, and her two daughters were found nearby Thursday stuffed inside full oil and natural gas tanks.

We learned Thursday evening that authorities had tragically found what the believed to be the bodies of 4-year-old Bella and 3-year-old Celeste Watts at a property belonging to Anadarko Petroleum, their dad's now-former employer.

Shanann and Chris Watts appeared to be happy during their June vacation.

Watts' husband and the father of the girls, 33-year-old Christopher Lee Watts, is in custody at the Weld County Jail on suspicion of first-degree murder, two counts of first-degree murder of a victim under the age of 12 while in a position of trust and three counts of tampering with a deceased human body. A judge sealed the arrest affidavit, which might have provided that information. The couple lived in Frederick, a town of about 8,600 people around 30 miles north of Denver.

Watts said: "When I got home yesterday, it was like a ghost town".

"I call it a highway to heaven", said neighbour Mary Ann Bogner, 64, fighting back tears as she arranged candles in the form of a cross.

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Shanann Watts grew up in Aberdeen, and still has family members in North Carolina.

But he grew anxious, he said, when one of her friends contacted him around noon and said she wasn't responding to messages.

"I walked in the house and - nothing", Chris Watts told KMGH. "They have the best daddy in the world!" she wrote.

"She said she was going to a friend's house with the kids and that's the last thing I heard, and that was it". "He was very convincing in front of the camera, which means he really comes off as sociopathic".

Earlier this week, Watts' told reporters he had no idea where his family could be, and he pleaded for their safe return.

The two planned to meet later, but Watts, 34, didn't answer her phone or show up for a doctor's appointment, the friend said. Police went to the Watts home in the 2800 block of Saratoga Trail in the Wyndham Hill subdivision and couldn't find her, Albert said.

"This is absolutely the worst possible outcome that any of us could imagine", said John Camper, director for the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, in a press conference Thursday. The media was asked to leave the gathering, which residents said was for the community to come together, pray and speak freely.

According to Facebook, Shanann worked as a brand promoter for Le-Vel, who make a Thrive weight loss and wellness patch, which she can be seen wearing in some pictures. I just feel so alone in this house right now.

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