Police attend the Brougham Street house in Cowra yesterday after a grandfather allegedly killed three family members with an axe and left his daughter seriously injured.An elderly man suspected of the killing of his wife and grandchildren in an axe attack in Cowra has been arrested.
The man, 69, was arrested without incident while walking along a street at Hay about 8.15pm last night, police said.
The arrest was made following information from the owner of a hotel in the town.
The man has been taken to Deniliquin Police Station for questioning.
He was on the run after the suspected triple murder that also left his police officer daughter with serious head injuries.
A badly-injured police officer ran screaming to her neighbour’s house in Brougham Street, Cowra, shortly after 2pm yesterday.
“The daughter was covered in blood and had a huge gash to the side of her head,” neighbour Terry Lovett said.
“The daughter said ‘Dad just killed Mum and the two kids’.”
The woman, aged 31, who was off-duty at the time of the attacks, was initially taken by ambulance to Cowra Hospital before being airlifted to Orange Base Hospital where she is in a serious condition.
The bodies of her son and daughter, aged 7 and 5 respectively, and her mother, aged in her 60s, remained in the house.
The police officer had been stationed at nearby Parkes but was about to be transferred to Cowra.
“She used to just drop the kids off to the grandparents place when she was going to work, and the grandparents used to just look after the kids for her,” Mr Lovett said.
The children’s father, who lives on the north coast of NSW, had been notified of the tragedy, and Mr Scipione said police were “certainly concerned about his welfare because he has lost two children today.”
He also said the incident’s impact on the NSW Police Force had been “tremendous”.
“This is probably one of the worst days in the history of the police family in NSW,” Mr Scipione said.
Mr Lovett described his elderly neighbours as a quiet, retired couple who moved to town about 10 years ago from Sydney.
“Then a few years ago his son committed suicide … and then after that, we did notice a bit of change in him.
“He was a bit quiet and didn’t socialise much,” he added.
The curtains were drawn at the modest weatherboard house, opposite the Cowra Croquet Club, as forensic officers last night scoured the crime scene.
Dozens of officers had earlier descended on the quiet street wearing bullet-proof vests with their guns drawn.
Cowra mayor Bruce Miller said his close-knit community of 10,000 was reeling.
“We do all look out for each other and any incident that affects children is especially harsh,” he said.
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