Christopher Watts was sentenced Monday, nearly two weeks after pleading guilty to avoid the death penalty. Prosecutors have said Shanann Watts' family consented to the plea deal.
He also pleaded guilty to unlawful termination of a pregnancy and tampering with a deceased human body. The 33-year-old is not eligible for parole.
Police have said Watts killed his wife and daughters, 4-year-old Bella and 3-year-old Celeste, inside their suburban Denver home. The children were found inside an oil tank. Watts was buried nearby.
A friend reported them missing in mid-August. In local news interviews before his arrest, Watts pleaded for his family's safe return.
Despite the guilty plea, Watts' parents said they believe there is more to the story.
"It boils down to: I just want the truth of what really happened," said Ronnie Watts, Chris' father. "If he did it all, I can live with it. If he didn't, I want him to fight for it."
Shanann's family pushed back saying her memory and reputation should be protected.
"Shanann was a wonderful soul. Everyone who knew Shanann knows this to be true. Even Chris Watts knows this to be true. Yet Chris Watts still chose to murder Shanann, Bella, Celeste, and Nico. Chris Watts still chose to dump the bodies of his own family in oil tanks. And Chris Watts still chose to lie about it until he could lie no more. He pled guilty to murdering his family because he is guilty."
In court Monday, Shanann's parents were allowed to speak.
Watts' eligibility for the death penalty was removed as an agreement for him pleading guilty in the case.
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