Court hears how man planned and executed estranged wife’s killing
Weeks before sneaking into his estranged wife’s home to brutally kill her, Sean Watson purchased hardware supplies to use in the crime.
That was contained in a detailed statement the 46-year-old architectural draughtsman of Bannantyne Gardens, Christ Church gave to police about how he planned and executed the murder.
Director of Public Prosecutions Donna Babb-Agard SC read the statement in the No. 2 Supreme Court on Tuesday after Watson pleaded guilty to non-capital murder in relation to the stabbing death of 37-year-old Nicole Harrison-Watson on April 28, 2012.
As Watson sat in the dock fidgeting with his hands and rapidly bouncing his right leg, the court heard that on the evening in question, he drove a hired car to the workplace of Harrison-Watson, a clerical officer at Urban Development Commission, and then followed her as she dropped off a workmate before heading to her Ferniehurst, Black Rock, St Michael home.
Watson watched her for a little while, then left and returned when it was dark. He parked by a pasture near her home, waiting for four hours until she left to go to a reggae show. During that time, he sent her a message saying he had tickets to go to Vintage Reggae and he was letting her know “out of courtesy” that they might see one another. In fact, Watson had no tickets but wanted to see his estranged wife’s response. She only read the message but did not reply.
When she was picked up at the house, Watson followed her to Kensington Oval where the show was held, before going home and changing into an all-black pants and shirt, a dark blue overall and a hoodie. He then got into his own car, where he had packed a bag of “tools’’ a week prior. The bag contained a hammer, a rubber hammer, a chisel, two crowbars, duct tape, a roll of plastic, gloves, cable ties, two notepads, a black marker, some white rope, a box cutter, scissors, a knife and a pair of black riding gloves. He admitted purchasing the items in March from two hardware stores along with two containers of gasoline from the gas station.
Watson drove back to his wife’s neighbourhood around 1:30 a.m., parked his car by a church, and got out, taking with him the bag, gas containers and a black bed sheet to hang over the clothesline so no one could see him if they passed the yard.
He used a crowbar to pry open the door and enter the house. Heading upstairs to Harrison-Watson’s bedroom, he went through her camera, iPad, photos and notes on her computer, and her Facebook page. He also skimmed through her bills, receipts, salary slips, and even her passport to see if she had travelled since they had separated.
Watson then took four pre-cut pieces of rope from his bag, two of which he had labelled ‘HANDS’ and tied them to each corner of the bed. He said he walked between Harrison-Watson’s and her daughter’s bedrooms, listening for when she returned. He took off the overalls, goggles and boots he was wearing and put them in the daughter’s bedroom.
Watson also outlined in the statement his intention to die in the house with his wife.
When she returned home, he hid in the daughter’s bedroom until his wife fell asleep. He then tied her right leg and left hand and went through her Blackberry phone conversations, several of which were with males which upset him. It was when he attempted to move her right hand that Harrison-Watson awoke, and he placed one hand over her mouth and the other on her throat, choking her as she struggled. When she fell unconscious, he tied her remaining limbs, grabbed the plastic cling wrap he had placed next to the bed and wrapped it around her mouth and nose.
Even though he assumed she was dead, Watson took a kitchen knife from his bag and stabbed her twice in the neck.
“I was so pissed at her…. She made a fool of me after I gave her everything I had for her livelihood, along with her daughter’s. I felt so betrayed along with all the emotional abuse I endured while we were together, but she didn’t care,” he said in his statement.
Watson put back on his overalls and boots and left the house the same way he entered, leaving the gas containers, hoodie and black shirt in the yard.
He said that it was bright and the rain was falling when he left. According to Watson’s statement, he made several attempts to end his life. He said he went to several beaches to drown himself but was deterred when he saw people or rough seas. Watson claimed he even attempted suicide in the parking lot of his workplace before heading back home, cutting his neck in the shower, and laying down in his bed. After a while, he heard a friend at the door who came in and asked him what happened, and he replied, “I couldn’t take it anymore. I shouldn’t be alive and should be dead” before telling him to call his lawyer. His friend did that and took him to Sandy Crest Medical Centre for treatment. He was then transferred to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
Watson was also examined by psychiatrist Dr Ermine Belle of the Psychiatric Hospital, who determined that he showed no features of psychiatric illness and was fit to plead and able to instruct counsel.
Justice Randall Worrell has remanded Watson into custody until sentencing. A pre-sentencing report has been ordered for December 14, when sentencing submissions from Babb-Agard and Watson’s defence attorney, Bryan Weekes, are to be heard.