The man who gunned down a Queensland policeman this week was much loved and not the one-dimensional career criminal portrayed in the media, his family has said.
Rick Maddison’s family has issued a statement expressing its condolences to the family and friends of Senior Constable Brett Forte who was shot dead on Monday afternoon with a high-powered weapon.
Police sources said the 37-year-old officer and his partner were ambushed when they confronted Maddison on a road near Gatton, west of Brisbane.
Maddison, who had a violent criminal history and was known to have serious grievances with police, died after a siege and a shootout with authorities on Tuesday morning.
The Maddison family said the 40-year-old’s actions “cannot be excused nor is it likely they will be ever fully understood”.
“To us he was not the one-dimensional career criminal which the media are now portraying but rather a loved son, brother, nephew, uncle, grandson, friend and mate to many and as such will be sadly mourned,” the statement said.
“We express our support for the Queensland Police Service and the often difficult and dangerous work its officers are required to undertake.
“We particularly wish to thank the police negotiators for their attempts to resolve a very difficult situation peacefully.”
The family asked the media and public to accept the pain and remorse they were feeling and have asked for privacy.