Ashley Gaddie arrested over alleged murder after stand off with police in Blue Mountains

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Accused killer Ashley Gaddie has been arrested after a marathon 12-hour standoff with police and will now be charged with murder.

The tattooed tradesman, 33, was wanted over the brutal alleged killing of teacher and female soccer pioneer Dannielle Finlay-Jones, 31, who he met on a dating app. 

She was found dead with severe head injuries at a friend’s Cranebrook home in western Sydney on Sunday afternoon. 

On Tuesday night, response squads swarmed an area in the Blue Mountains with specially trained police negotiators engaging with the alleged fugitive who was perched at the top of a precarious clifftop at Fletcher’s Lookout.

Gaddie’s Tinder profile featured a picture of him at Fletcher’s Lookout and other spots in the Blue Mountains.

Seven footage shows police holding onto the suspect who had been scaling the rockface on the other side of a safety barrier in an orange high-vis jacket.

After a tense stand-off, he was pulled onto the clifftop and arrested just after midnight.

The remote at Wentworth Falls location, popular with tourists and bushwalkers, is the very same spot where Gaddie posted a Tinder selfie to woo women for his online dating profile.

Ashley Gaddie arrested over alleged murder after stand off with police in Blue Mountains

Accused killer Ashley Gaddie has been arrested after a marathon 12-hour standoff with police and will now be charged with murder 

Dannielle Finlay-Jones, 31, (pictured) was found dead at her friend's Cranebrook home on Sunday, sparking a manhunt for her alleged killer

Dannielle Finlay-Jones, 31, (pictured) was found dead at her friend’s Cranebrook home on Sunday, sparking a manhunt for her alleged killer

On Tuesday night, response squads swarmed an area in the Blue Mountains with specially trained police negotiators engaging with the alleged fugitive who was perched at the top of a precarious clifftop at Fletcher's Lookout

On Tuesday night, response squads swarmed an area in the Blue Mountains with specially trained police negotiators engaging with the alleged fugitive who was perched at the top of a precarious clifftop at Fletcher’s Lookout

‘As part of inquiries, officers from Blue Mountains Police Area Command attended Fletchers Lookout at Wentworth Falls about 12.30pm yesterday (Tuesday 20 December 2022),’ NSW Police said in a statement early this morning.

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‘Officers located a man on the incorrect side of safety barriers and requested the assistance of specialist police resources.

‘Police Negotiators attended and engaged the man in conversation before he was arrested about 12am today (Wednesday 21 December 2022).

‘The 33-year-old man is expected to undergo assessment before being taken to Katoomba Police Station, where he will be charged with murder.’

While the young teacher and Gaddie connected on a dating app in early December, it is understood they met for the first time at the Marsden Brewhouse in Marsden Park on Saturday night before returning to the Cranebrook home in the early hours of Sunday. 

A police operation was launched in the Blue Mountains on Tuesday afternoon connected to the manhunt for Ashley Gaddie – with specialist negotiators called in

Pictured: Specially trained police negotiators engaged with Gaddie who was perched at the top of a precarious clifftop at Fletcher's Lookout (pictured taking a selfie at the same spot)

Pictured: Specially trained police negotiators engaged with Gaddie who was perched at the top of a precarious clifftop at Fletcher’s Lookout (pictured taking a selfie at the same spot)

The manhunt led police to Fletcher's Lookout in the Blue Mountains at Wentworth Falls

The manhunt led police to Fletcher’s Lookout in the Blue Mountains at Wentworth Falls

Her body was found by distraught friends eight hours later.

Police believe Ms Finlay-Jones introduced Gaddie to her friends during the pub date. 

It was the last time they saw her until they discovered her body when they went to check on her about 2.30pm on Sunday.

Ms Finlay-Jones was revered in her community as a female football pioneer and credited with encouraging dozens of women to take up the sport.

She worked as a support officer at the NSW Department of Education and was the Director of Female Football.

She was also a coordinator for Ramsgate RSL Football Club, in Monterey, south Sydney, and spoke on behalf of the club in videos on their social media pages promoting women’s sports. 

A friend said Ms Finlay-Jones was an ‘incredible person inside and out’.

‘She is cherished by everyone who knew her and words cannot describe the shock that this has happened,’ she told Daily Mail Australia.

‘She did not deserve this and will be dearly missed.’

In September, Ms Finlay-Jones recently celebrated 25 years of service at the Ramsgate RSL Football Club.

The passionate sportswoman was awarded a trophy for her work as the club’s Female Football Director just months before her untimely death.

The Ramsgate RSL Football Club posted several photos of Ms Finlay-Jones receiving the award and making a speech on-stage to Instagram.

Ms Finlay-Jones (pictured) worked as a support officer at the NSW Department of Education

Ms Finlay-Jones (pictured) worked as a support officer at the NSW Department of Education

‘We are honoured to have you lead our female players, young and old, in shaping their development and their future in our sport,’ the post read.

Ms Finlay-Jones also featured in a video in May 2021 where she spoke about the club’s achievements during Female Football week.

‘Some 25 years ago, when I started out at Ramsgate RSL Football Club, as a female footballer, we didn’t have female-only teams so I was playing with the boys up until I was 12-years-old,’ she said.

‘Fast-forward to today and we have fielded female-only teams from under six all the way through to all-aged women. What an achievement.

‘We continue to make strides within the community and push forward to promote female footballers. Go the girls.’

Police tape surrounded a home on Borrowdale Way, Cranebrook, on Monday as homicide detectives investigate the death of Dannielle Finlay-Jones

Police tape surrounded a home on Borrowdale Way, Cranebrook, on Monday as homicide detectives investigate the death of Dannielle Finlay-Jones

Ms Finlay-Jones was a teacher and was actively involved in female football 

It remains unclear where Gaddie was currently employed. 

In October last year, he wrote in a mining Facebook group seeking work in oil exploration. 

Records also show he previously operated a personal training business from 2012 to 2015. 

A long term resident of the apartment block in north-western Sydney where Gaddie lived until sometime over a month ago, said he had lived there for about six months with a blonde woman and another man.

‘I recognise him because of the tattoos,’ she said. ‘I didn’t have anything to do with him, just saw him come and go.’

It is understood Ms Finlay-Jones and Gaddie met at the Marsden Brewhouse on Saturday night before going to her friends' place

It is understood Ms Finlay-Jones and Gaddie met at the Marsden Brewhouse on Saturday night before going to her friends’ place 

Gaddie is pictured in a singlet, shorts, and sunglasses on a nature walk on his Tinder profile

Gaddie is pictured in a singlet, shorts, and sunglasses on a nature walk on his Tinder profile

TIMELINE OF EVENTS

Saturday night

Dannielle Finlay-Jones and Ashley Gaddie allegedly meet up at The Marsden Brewhouse, in Marsden Park, with her friends.

She allegedly introduces him to her friends as her new boyfriend. 

Sunday

About 1am-3am 

Ms Finlay-Jones and Gaddie allegedly return to the woman’s friends place about 20km away, in Cranebrook. 

2.30pm 

Ms Finlay-Jones’ friends find her unconscious at the Cranebrook home and call paramedics, who pronounce her dead at the scene. Police believe she may have been dead up to eight hours. 

Tuesday

About 9.30am 

Police issue an alert asking for the public’s help to locate Gaddie, saying a warrant has been issued for his arrest for alleged murder. 

About 3pm

Reports emerge a police operation is underway in the Blue Mountains connected to the search for Gaddie. 

Wednesday

12:30am

Police announce Gaddie has been arrested and will soon be charged with murder 

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