Saskatchewan

Sask. family says man stabbed through skull with screwdriver, police say likely 'mistaken identity'

A Saskatoon man is in critical condition after a horrific stabbing inside a hospital earlier this month.

Kevin Witchekan charged with attempted murder in relation to incident at Royal University Hospital

A man and a young woman face the camera, with their arms around each other.
Randy Beauchesne and his daughter Danya Beauchesne. Randy is currently in critical condition after a stabbing on June 13 at the Royal University Hospital. (Submitted by Danya Beauchesne)

Danya Beauchesne says she has been in shock ever since her father was attacked more than two weeks ago. 

Randy Beauchesne was at Saskatoon's Royal University Hospital on June 13 with Danya, who was seeking medical care.

Danya says Randy was at the cafeteria that night when a man came up behind him and drove a screwdriver through his skull, penetrating his frontal lobe.

Danya didn't see the attack, but says nurses informed her of what happened. 

Court documents don't confirm the weapon, but do show that Kevin Witchekan, 39, has been charged with attempting to murder Randy. Police also released a statement on June 14 about the assault taking place inside the hospital. 

Randy, a 55-year-old two-time cancer survivor, is in ICU in critical but stable condition, according to his daughter.

"I just love him so much. I don't want to see this happen to anybody," Danya said. "To have this happen is rather unexpected. It doesn't deserve to happen to anyone."

'Likely a case of mistaken identity'

Police tell CBC News that investigators believe this is "likely a case of mistaken identity," meaning Randy wasn't the intended victim.

Police didn't share any more information beyond that as the matter is before the courts.

Witchekan has been remanded for a bail hearing on July 7. 

The Saskatchewan Health Authority says there's no information at this time to suggest there are more safety concerns for visitors or patients at RUH as it relates to this incident. 

Randy was helping daughter's friend

Danya says Randy had stepped away to help an old friend of hers, who was also admitted to hospital, pay for her parking.

But he didn't return.

"I tried calling him. I tried texting him and there's no response," Danya recalls.

Danya Beauchesne says she has been in shock ever since her father was attacked on June 13. (Yasmine Ghania/CBC)

Randy has little to no feeling on his left side and the severity of the brain damage is still unclear, Danya says. He just had a feeding tube removed on Monday. 

Danya says he can barely talk and faces a long recovery process. 

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Randy with medical expenses and future bills.

"He's already been through so much in his life," Danya said. 'He really doesn't need to go through this too."

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Yasmine Ghania is a reporter with CBC News, currently based in Saskatoon. Her work is featured on both national and local platforms. She has uncovered sexual abuse allegations at a private Christian school and deep problems within a police force in Saskatchewan. You can reach her confidentially by email: yasmine.ghania@cbc.ca or https://www.cbc.ca/securedrop/

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