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Nichol Kessinger-Her Life Before and After Chris Watts’ Murder Case

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  • Post last modified:September 2, 2022
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Nichol Kessinger is an American woman who hit media headlights for being the former girlfriend of serial killer Chris Watts. Chris was charged with killing his pregnant wife and their two innocent kids. In August 2018, the court found him guilty of the murder of his own family and was sentenced to life imprisonment. Furthermore, Watts claimed that her then-girlfriend Nichol Kessinger also supported him in his criminal activity. So, many people are curious to know if Nichol was also involved in the murder or not.

Apart from alleged crime, what did Kessinger use to do before for a living? How did the girl meet Chris and become his mistress? Where is Nichol Kessinger now? Well, here are lots of questions that need to be answered. Stick with us to find out what actually happened. After the incident, many people believe that Kissinger is living her new life, changing her real name. So, what is Nichol’s new name?

Well, in this article, we will try to find out every hidden detail regarding Nichol Kessinger’s life including her early life, reported involvement in the murder, her new name, and many more!

Nichol Kessinger’s Parents And Early Details 

Kessinger was born in 1988 in Colorado, America. While there is no more information about her siblings and mother, we do know that her father, Dwayne Kessinger is an electrical engineer as per his profession. Her father earned his engineering degree from Red Rocks Community College.

Following his graduation, Dwayne landed his first professional job as an industrial electrician in 1984. A couple other job titles Kessinger held so far include an Engineering Manager for RK Mission Critical from 2017 to 2021 and an Electrical Controls & Power Engineer from 2021 to 2022. Her dad is now an Electrical Engineering Specialist for Easter-Owens Electric Co.

College and Ethnic Details

Talking about her educational qualification, Kessinger attended Colorado State University and graduated with a degree in geology in 2013. She also received an Associate Degree from the Community College of Aurora in the Geological & Earth Sciences and Geosciences field.

Besides, as for her ethnicity, Nichol belongs to the Caucasian ethnicity and is an American by her nationality.

Kessinger’s Life Before Metting Chris Watts

After her graduation, Kessinger landed her first professional job as a bookkeeper. She has also experience in the field of engineering where the 34-year-old worked for almost a decade. She first started working at Halliburton as an MWD Field engineer. Nichol was also appointed as Project Manager at RK Mechanical.

Later on, Nichol started working at Anadarko Petroleum. Her work in the petroleum company was to handle the environmental department. This is the place where Kessinger also met her boyfriend Chris Watts for the first time. However, once the dreadful family crime hit the media, the ex-pair was fired from the job.

How did Nichol Kessinger Meet Her Future Boyfriend Chris Watts?

As mentioned earlier, Kessinger and Chris encounter each other paths at the same working place. Watts was then working as an operator. In an interview with The Denver Post, Nichol told that Chris and his fellow colleagues would always spend some time in the office break room for her, before going to work.

Time passed by and later in June 2018, Chris himself came to her office room for some paperwork and this was the first time they had their first conversation. In fact, at the time, Watts was still in a marital relationship with his then-wife Shanann Cathryn Rzucek. Despite being already married, Chris didn’t have any wedding ring so it was obvious Nichol was totally positive toward him.

The two gradually started to share quite a good bond among themselves. After some time, the murderer also revealed that he was married and was in process of getting a divorce from his wife and has two kids with her.

Later in June, Chris told Nichol that his divorce was almost finalized and is in process of settlement of some of their financial issues. The story doesn’t end here, while Nichol was busy having affairs with CW, she was clueless that this affair is going to change her life forever and unaware of the fact that her downfall would the same reason.

Christopher Watts’s Wife and Daughters Missing

Back on 13th August 2018, a close friend of Shanann Cathryn Rzucek, Nickole Atkinson reported a missing case to the police. Nickole said to the police that she went to meet Shanann after she didn’t answer her phone call. Then she went to her residence and rang the doorbell and then knocked on the door quite a few times but no one answered. She then notified her husband and the Frederick Police Department.

Chris Watts family
Serial Killer Chris Watts’s wife Shanann and their two daughters

Chris informed the investigator that he last saw his wife and daughters sleeping when he left for work at around 5:15 am that day. But when he returned, he couldn’t see them anywhere. However, the story stated by Christopher and Nickole didn’t match which made the police suspicious of Chris.

Moreover, while leaving the house, Shannan didn’t take any of her belongings including even her phone and purse which left further suspicion that Chris was trying to hide something dangerous.

Kessinger Broke Up With Chris Watts After He Lied About His Divorce

Well, immediately after Watts’s wife and daughter’s missing reports burst into headlines, Nichol came to know that Chris had lied to her about his divorce from his then-wife. She then contacted the Weld County Sheriff’s office and clarified the relationship between them. In an interview with The Denver Post, Nichol stated that “Chris doesn’t seem worried which made her more suspicious.” Furthermore, she also said that whenever she tried to talk about his family, he always used to ignore her.

It got to a point that he was telling me so many lies that I eventually told him that I did not want to speak to him again until his family was found.

Nichol further contracted FBI officers and said,

With a pregnant woman and two children missing, I was going to do anything that I could.

Nichol’s Then-Partner Chris Watts Found Guilty of Murdering His Pregnant Wife And Two Daughter

Back on August 15, 2018, CW was arrested for his crime. The court later pleaded him guilty and was sentenced to life imprisonment with no chance of parole.

Initially, Chris claimed that he killed his wife Shanann because she killed their children after he asked her for a divorce. He said that his wife was strangling celeste and his daughter was lying on the bed with a blue face. So, out of anger, he went downstairs and choked Shanann to her death. However, the story seems a little unpleasant while hearing it. Later, he confessed that he was lying and killed his daughter and pregnant wife.

When the investigator asked him what he did with the dead bodies, he revealed that he loaded the three bodies in his truck, and drove to his work site in Anadarko Petroleum Corporation. Chris hided her wife’s body near oil tanks and his daughters inside one of the oil tanks. On August 16, 2018, the investigators found the missing bodies in Anadarko Petroleum.

Chris Watts killed his own wife
Nichol Kessinger’s boyfriend Chris Watts in a court

Likewise, Chris Watts was fined a total of $6 million, including $3 million for the pain of the family and $3 million for the murder of his wife and daughters.

In a closing statement, Chris said he would never kill his wife and daughters if he hadn’t met Kelly. Furthermore, Netflix released a documentary related to Watts’s murder case on September 30 2020 titled “American Murder: The Family Next Door.”

Was Nichol Kessinger Involved In Chris Watt’s Family Murder Case?

The involvement of Nichols in the murder case is still a contradiction. Although the court pleaded not guilty to Nichol Kessinger in the Watts family murder case, there were still lots of hidden queries that need to be answered. Nichol claimed that she was unknown about Chris’s wife, while her google search history says quite a different story.

The contradiction between her claims and search history makes people think that was Nichol Kessinger really involved in the crime. Let’s find out what are the things that seem suspicious.

Before CW was arrested for the murder of his own family, Kessinger deleted some of the text messages. When asked about this she said that she just removed all the text because Chris lied to her. In the same interview mentioned above with The Denver Post, she justified the statement by,

“I was just kinda grossed out by him. I didn’t know what was going on right now. You just lied to me and I don’t wanna see this come over my phone again. So I removed it. I deleted all of his stuff because he lied to me. It was the hurt that made me delete it.”

Some Of The Suspicious Activities of Nichol Kessinger

While investigating, the police officers found some google search histories made by Kessinger,

  • Wedding dress,
  • Tons of searches for Shanann before even knowing Chris as she mentioned,
  • Phrases like, Man I am having an affair with, say he will leave his wife,
  • Marrying your mistress

This is not definitely what she suggested to investigator officers. On the morning of August 13th, in the Netflix documentary, the producers included one interesting comment from a neighbor. She said she saw a gray truck near the Watt’s house on the same morning the incident happened and she knew it wasn’t Chris’s. His work truck was big and brown.

And Nikki drove a Toyota Four Runner truck. Not sure what color it was. Interestingly, the discovery documents note that Nikki’s cell pinged in Frederick at 6:15 AM on August 13th. She lived in Northglenn, which is about 20 minutes away.

However, Chris plead guilty and suggested he was only involved in a murder so, there was no further investigation. Nichol then contacted the FBI and asked them if she can change her name and live her life low-key for quite some time with a new name.

What Is Nichol Kessinger Upto Nowadays? Her New Name

Well, after the incident, Kessinger lived privately and had no public appearance. She just disappeared ever since then. She probably moved out of town, probably did change her name and maybe even her appearance, because there’s been no mention of any sightings of her at all. And because Chris confessed and pled guilty right away, she never actually testified against him so she’s probably not officially on a witness protection program.

Many people assume that Nichol Kessinger is living her life with the new name of Angela Marie Avis.