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Night of chaos that ended in murder

Victims Jack and Gary Treeby were brothers, but Gary told the court he had lost his best friend too when Jack was killed.

Gary Treeby, left, with another member of the Treeby family
Gary Treeby, left, with another member of the Treeby family

The jury heard that the pair had been close friends. Gary (right) maintained that if someone crossed his brother Jack, they would get “a slap” from him alone.

Billy Jnr admitted in court that he felt closer to his two uncles than his father and brother. The three often went to the gym together and, he said, of Jack and Gary together: “You wouldn’t cross them in any way if you knew what was good for you.”

A sequence of events which led to the family falling apart explosively began with a family row in the Harrow pub, in Lidsing, on Christmas Eve last year.

As a result of that disagreement, Gary told Jack Jnr "You ain’t no real Treeby" and said he would tell Jack that he was a "grass."

Gary said in court that he and Jack had considered picking Billy Jnr up in their car later that evening as he walked home, but decided against it when they came across him talking to a policeman.

Phonecalls then began flying between a number of family members, which escalated and ended in violence and the bloodshed in Quarry Road, Maidstone, three days later.

Family members testified about the escalating row. Alison Treeby said she heard her brother Bill Treeby Snr make threats about Jack and Gary Treeby at the pub.

Miss Treeby said after hearing about the row in the pub, she spoke to Bill Snr on the phone, putting it on speaker as she sat in her car with Jack.

She asked Bill Treeby: “Why don’t you sort it out? It looks as if the argument is going too far.”

Treeby, she claimed, replied: “I am not sorting it out, because it’s two cartridges for big boy, two cartridges for Jack and the same for Johnny.”

Miss Treeby said she understood "big boy" to be Gary while Johnny was another brother.

“I told him not to be stupid and to sort it out differently,” she said. “He said: 'No, they can have it.’”

She said that when she went to her sister Mary’s home in Quarry Road, Tovil, on December 27 for a Christmas get together, she was standing on the front doorstep having a cigarette when Bill Treeby senior rang on Gary’s phone rang and she answered it.

She told the jury: “He went: 'You are there still?’ I went: 'Yes.’ He said: 'You are getting the same as what the other two are getting.’

“He didn’t say what. I assumed it was two cartridges each, which he said in the first telephone call. He didn’t say when that might happen."

That night a group of family and friends standing outside the driveway of the house, witnessed a Range Rover travelling into the road from Coombe Road, followed by a Ford Mondeo.

CCTV footage of the Treeby murder supplied by Kent Police
CCTV footage of the Treeby murder supplied by Kent Police

Jack Treeby Jnr was injured when he was hit by the 4x4.

A shot gun blast hit number 1 Quarry Road (an otherwise unrelated address). The vehicles then turned and travelled back down Quarry Road. Everyone in the road fled and took cover.

As both vehicles continue into Quarry Road, they crashed into cars parked in the road, including Jack Treeby Jnr's Peugeot.

CCTV footage of the Treeby murder supplied by Kent Police
CCTV footage of the Treeby murder supplied by Kent Police

Both the 4X4 Range Rover and Mondeo were damaged, the Mondeo so severely it was abandoned at the junction with Coombe Road.

The 4X4 turned around again and a shot was fired, which hit Gary Treeby. The vehicle mounted the pavement and hit Jack Treeby.

CCTV footage showed a woman and two men stood over a man who was lying on the floor injured. Gary Treeby was beaten, with what officers believe to be an iron bar, as he lay on the floor already suffering from extensive gunshot wounds to his leg. The 4X4 leaves the scene.

Police were called to Quarry Road in Maidstone just before 7pm following reports of a collision and gun shots heard in the area.

Emergency services arrived to find a vehicle alight, one man who died at the scene and a second man with serious injuries, including a gun shot wound.
Paramedics treated Gary Treeby before rushing him to hospital for emergency surgery. A third man, 17 year old Jack Treeby Jnr, was also treated at the scene for minor injuries.

Detective Chief Inspector Rob Vinson said: "This was a family dispute that erupted in to violence leaving one man dead and his brother shot down by members of his own family.

"With the weapons used and the reckless attitude of those involved, we are thankful that no one else was seriously injured.

"I am pleased that a jury has today found all four guilty of their part in the events of that night and three of them will be going to prison for a long time."

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