The two brothers who were shot dead after killing two police officers and a neighbour in cold blood had reportedly been taking ice and bragging about their “fortified house” in the lead up to the horrific attack.
The “murderous trio”, Nathaniel Train, his brother Gareth and sister-in-law Stacey, were all killed in a shootout with police at a rural Queensland property on Monday afternoon.
Constable Rachel McCrow, 29, and Constable Matthew Arnold, 26, were killed “execution-style” after attending the property in Wieambilla, about three hours west of Brisbane, to inquire about a missing person.
A neighbour, 58-tear-old Alan Dare, was also shot and killed by the trio.
Constable Rachel McCrow was one of the officers who died at a property in Wieambilla on Monday afternoon.Constable Matthew Arnold, 26, was also fatally shot while attending the property. Picture: Facebook
Two other officers, Constable Keely Brough and Constable Randall Kirk, both aged 28, were also involved in the ambush but managed to escape, with the latter suffering a gunshot wound to the leg.
The sickening killings sparked a major manhunt for the Train brothers and Stacey, with a 16-person Special Operations team eventually tracking them down and killing them during a gunfight.
Now, claims have surfaced that the trio were engaged in a bizarre love triangle, with The Australian reporting Nathaniel may have been married to Stacey before she was with his brother.
One source told the publication that they were involved in a “love tryst”, with police now trying to understand the dynamic between the brothers and Stacey in the lead up to the bloodshed.
Locals have also claimed that the Train brothers had been using methamphetamine and bragging about turning Gareth and Stacey’s two-bedroom home into a sort of bunker.
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Nathaniel Train was reportedly in a love triangle with his sister-in-law and brother.
The Daily Mail reported a close family member had told one local that the home had been moved completely off grid, with the brothers installing solar panels, satellite dishes and rainwater and septic tanks.
“He said it had tunnels, fortified and barred doors and windows, guns everywhere and the boys [the Train brothers] had been taking ice lately,” the local from the nearby town of Tara said.
Mystery still surrounds how Nathaniel, once a respected educator with a reputation for turning around struggling schools, became a cold-blooded cop killer.
He was last seen in Dubbo in December 2021 but “serious concerns” were raised for his welfare when he stopped contacting his family on October 9, 2022.
Nathaniel was the “missing person” that police were inquiring about when they approached the Wieambilla home.
Margaret, a woman who rented the Wieambilla home ten years ago, told the Daily Mail that a relative of the Train brothers had told her they had “‘fortified the house and built tunnels underneath … with brickwork or blocks”.
She said it was an “ordinary house” when she had lived there with her children and grandchildren, but noted she heard that things had recently “gone bad in there”.
“I heard it turned into some kind of weird cult,” Margaret said.
“They had barbed wire. I don’t know about cameras, but it was made so nobody could get inside easily.”
Locals have claimed the Train brothers turned the home into a sort of fortress and took it completely off the grid.
Cops probe whether deadly rampage was premeditated
Police are reportedly investigating whether the shooting-spree that killed officers Ms McCrow, Mr Arnold and neighbour Mr Dare was premeditated.
Queensland Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll told ABC’s 7.30 program that investigators would “get to the bottom” of what occurred, including whether the trio deliberately lured police to the property.
“We’re definitely investigating every avenue, whether it be premeditated, some of the stuff that’s online from these people,” she said.
“We will investigate what they have been doing not only in recent weeks, but in recent years, who have they been interacting with, family, friends, their online presence.”
A police source told the ABC that graphic body camera footage from the officers involved would be used to piece together what happened, including how the officers and Mr Dare died.
Alan Dare was also killed in the shooting. Picture: FacebookAn aerial view of the scene at the property in Wieambilla. Picture: Nine
The four police officers arrived at the remote property at about 4.40pm on Monday, with a source close to the investigation telling NCA NewsWire that what unfolded next was “very, very rapid”.
Ms McCrow and Mr Arnold arrived in the first vehicle, and met up with a second car containing Ms Brough and Mr Kirk before approaching the property.
Ms McCrow and Mr Arnold then honked their horn to alert the residents of their presence.
When there was no movement from inside the house, the four officers got out of their cars and approached the house.
Ms McCrow and Mr Arnold jumped over the locked fence, with the other two following behind.
Seconds later, a shower of bullets descended on the four officers.
Ms McCrow and Mr Arnold were instantly hit, and fell to the ground.
NCA Newswire understands Constable Kirk was also shot in the leg in the same hail of gunfire, but managed to make it back to his police car as he hadn’t jumped the fence.
QLD Police Constable Keely Brough escaped the shooting by fleeing into the surrounding bush. Picture: FacebookThe attackers started a bush fire in an attempt to flush Ms Brough out of her hiding spot. Picture: Nine
The offenders gave chase and fired into his car as he drove away, calling for help, causing him to become showered in shards of glass.
As the assailants tried to hunt down Constable Kirk, his colleague Constable Brough had managed to escape on foot into dense scrubland.
The young officer had only been on the police force for eight weeks, with Queensland Police Union president Ian Leavers revealing a bushfire had been lit by the gunmen allegedly in an attempt to ““try and coax” out the remaining officer.
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“She did not know whether she was going to be shot or she was going to be burnt alive,” he said.
“I know she was sending messages to loved ones saying she was at a point where she thought it was her time.”