Raleigh woman killed just before Christmas was shot in the head

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – A Raleigh teen who died in a shooting two days before Christmas was shot in the head, according to a 9-1-1 call released Monday.

Kari Onyea Watson, 18, died at the scene Wednesday night at a shooting in the 2800 block of Filbert Street. Watson went to Southeast Raleigh High and was a freshman at Winston-Salem State.

Raleigh shooting
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Xavier JaQuan Sanders, 21, was charged with murder in Watson’s death and appeared in court Monday afternoon. The judge kept Sanders behind bars following the appearance.

One frantic caller, in describing the wound said, “She was shot in the head!”

The operator then responded, “I asked if she’s breathing, sir.”

“No she’s not breathing, sir, she’s [deleted] dead,” the caller said.

Another caller to 9-1-1, in describing the scene, said, “I just got out of the car and somebody started opening fire.”

After that, the caller said, the gunman “just got out of the car and started walking.”

Watson’s 18-year-old boyfriend, Dre’kwon Bagley, was injured in the Wednesday night shooting as well.

Watson’s family members said she had earned a Future Teachers of Wake County Scholarship. Watson’s aunt said her niece was attending Winston-Salem State University in hopes of becoming a history teacher. Watson had just recently earned dean’s list honors after her first semester in college.

Watson’s aunt described her niece as “an angel that will be missed by us all.”

Family members said they believed Watson was giving a friend a ride home Wednesday night when she got caught in the middle of a shootout. Neighbors said they heard at least 10 shots.

Police said Thursday that the shooting “was not a random act.” Sanders was also charged with assault with a deadly weapon with the intent to kill, according to the Raleigh Police booking website.

The accused shooter has a past criminal record which includes convictions for larceny and felony breaking and entering back in 2010. Sanders was arrested in Sept of 2010 and was given a suspended sentence along with community service and probation for those 2010 crimes.


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