The latest Saskatchewan legislative member to forward an apology in the case of Colin Thatcher’s appearance at the Throne Speech is Minister of Corrections, Policing and Public Safety, Christine Tell. Tell initially defended the convicted murderer's presence, saying he had a right to be there as a free citizen who had served his sentence. Thatcher attended the Throne Speech at the invitation of MLA Lyle Stewart, longtime friend of Thatcher.
Thatcher received a life sentence for the murder of his wife, Joanne Wilson, with an opportunity for parole after 25 years. Since Thatcher still adheres to the conditions of his parole, Tell received criticism for asserting Thatcher was a “free man.”
In her statement following the Premier’s apology for his comments on the matter, Tell explained, “I say ‘free’ as opposed to being incarcerated. So I may have used another word inappropriately. He’s not in jail, he’s out on parole, with standard conditions of every person who is on life with parole.”
“It wasn’t the appropriate response,” Tell affirmed.