Man charged with first-degree murder after Regina stabbing victim dies

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Man charged with first-degree murder after Regina stabbing victim dies

A 19-year-old man has been charged with first-degree murder after stabbing victim Shaun Napoleon Watcheston died earlier this month. 

On Monday, Regina police said the charge against Jayshree Isiah Joel Apooch had been upgraded from attempted murder.

Police were first called to the 300 block of Rae Street just before 2:00 p.m. CST on April 10. They found Watcheston with serious stab wounds and called EMS, who transported him to hospital. 

Watcheston died in hospital two days later on April 12, which also marked his 49th birthday.

"It escalated so fast we didn't really have time to process anything until he passed away," said his sister Twila Pelletier Watcheston on Monday.

"It's just so sad."

She said it was shocking to hear what happened to him, and the family is struggling to deal with the tragedy.

Pelletier Watcheston said several of their family members were able to see him in hospital before he died. Many of them, like her, had travelled from Calgary to be there.

She described Watcheston as a father and an avid cat lover, who adored Smokey and Lucky, his own "fur babies."

"He was a great guy. He loved to laugh, he loved to joke," she said.

Watcheston lived in Calgary for most of his life, until he moved to Regina about 15 years ago, she said. 

She added that he became private and reserved, keeping to himself during his time in the city. 

Pelletier Watcheston said she and her siblings grew up in the foster care system. Their sister, Melodie Willems, lived in the same home as Watcheston until he was around 13-years-old. 

"He had a soft heart," she told CBC through text messages. "He was quiet, soft spoken, never started a fight or argument."

She said he was protective of his friends and family. Furthermore, she said he also loved sports, like wrestling, hockey and fishing. 

Accused arrested after second incident

​​​​Police arrested Apooch on April 11, after they were called to another assault with a weapon not long after 6:00 a.m. Apooch reportedly fled the scene, but police located him near Ross Avenue and Park Street. 

This 56-year-old victim in that incident was not injured. Police identified Apooch as the same person of interest in connection with the stabbing on Rae Street that happened the day prior. 

Police were notified that Watcheston had died in hospital on April 12. This was the city's second homicide of 2019. 

At the time, police said there was a possibility the charges could change depending on the outcome of the investigation by the Regina police's major crimes unit and Saskatchewan Coroner's Service. 

Apooch has been remanded to custody and is scheduled to appear in court on April 29.