Mother of Shanann Watts says she knew the moment her daughter died — from thousands of miles away

The family of murdered Colorado mother Shanann Watts appeared on “Dr. Phil” on Monday and revealed even more about the August 13 killings at the hands of Shanann’s husband Chris Watts.

Last week, the Colorado Bureau of Investigation released audio and a written transcript of an interview Watts gave investigators from the Wisconsin prison where he is serving multiple life sentences for the murder of his pregnant wife and two daughters, 4-year-old Bella and 3-year-old Celeste. In the interview, the first detailed confession he had given about the crimes, Watts revealed that his daughters were still alive as he drove them, with Shanann’s dead body, to an oil field where he strangled his daughters and dropped their bodies in oil tanks. He admitted that Bella was sitting right next to Celeste when he strangled the younger girl, and that Bella watched him dispose of her sister’s body just before her own murder.

“The hardest part is knowing that Bella watched her sister die,” Shanann’s mother Sandra Rzucek told Dr. Phil on Monday’s episode.

“We were thinking that they were killed in their bed. That would have been better to swallow.”

Sandra also told Dr. Phil that she was visited by the spirits of her daughter and granddaughters, and was woken from her sleep the morning that Shanann was killed, certain that something was wrong — even though she lives across the country from Colorado, in North Carolina.

“I felt my daughter’s spirit the moment she died … I knew,” she said. “I woke up the whole house and said something happened to Shanann.”

Days later, after the bodies were found, Sandra said she was visited by Shanann, Bella, and Celeste, and that Shanann gave her the baby boy she had been carrying, Nico, to hold.

Sandra said that Bella told her: “Guess what Nonna, I can go to Walt Disney World anytime I want.” Shanann’s spirit said she loved her and that she was sorry, she told Dr. Phil.

While Sandra said she is comforted knowing that her daughter and grandchildren are at peace, she, her husband, and Shanann’s brother Frankie are struggling with the knowledge that Bella and Celeste suffered before their deaths. Sandra also said she was upset to know how quickly after their murders Chris put their bodies in separate oil tanks.

“I just prayed to God in heaven that they were literally dead,” Sandra said.

Stay with CrimeOnline for more reports from the Rzuceks’ appearance on “Dr. Phil.”