Pair attacked at city train station

WARWICK women Kellie-Anne Matthews and Nardia Nicholls are still in shock after being attacked at a Brisbane train station on Sunday night.

It was after the friends travelled by train from Fortitude Valley to Cooparoo, where they have been living for five months, at 8.30pm Sunday their horrific night began.

“It was the first time we had caught the train at night and we didn’t think anything of it,” Miss Matthews told the Daily News yesterday.

“When we first got off the train we were a bit scared because there were not many people around.”

Miss Matthews said they noticed a woman who appeared to be drunk at the station and, feeling threatened by her presence, the women quickly headed towards Miss Nicholls’ car.

After the woman demanded their car keys, Miss Matthews said they hesitated and the attacker turned on Miss Nicholls punching her repeatedly in the face.

Miss Matthews tried to protect her friend and was also punched a number of times in the head by the woman.

“Nardia received most of the injuries, she was punched repeatedly to the face and she has a broken jaw and swelling around her eye and to her lip,” Miss Matthews said. “I was just trying to defend her.”

Miss Matthews said the Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander woman, who was accompanied by a man, held them captive for about half an hour while she tormented them because she didn’t like “white girls” before they stole Miss Nicholls’ car.

“We said to her ‘just take the car and go’ but she wouldn’t let us,” she said.

“It was terrifying – we wanted to give her what she wanted and get out of there.”

The girls managed to escape by running and hiding as there was no one around in the industrial estate until the police arrived.

Both girls had their injuries treated at The Princess Alexander Hospital and Miss Nicholls stayed overnight for observation.

Miss Matthews warned other women using train stations to be more cautious of their surroundings and to make sure they were in a group.

“We won’t be using a train station at night time again,” she said.

The pair, who moved to Brisbane together last November after being born and bred in the Rose City, are recovering from the terrifying experience at their new home in Cooparoo.

Their unknown attackers were both described as being Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander in appearance and about 170cm tall.

The woman was wearing light blue jeans, white singlet and wore her long black hair in a ponytail and the man had a thin build, sandy blonde hair, wearing a cap, jeans and a blue t-shirt.

Police are searching for Miss Nicholls’ stolen white Kia hatchback and investigations are continuing.

In light of the women’s attack, the LNP has called for a boost to the Police Railway Squad to improve safety of the rail network.

Shadow Minister for Transport Fiona Simpson said the number of police officers patrolling the network had barely changed in six years even though there had been an increase in passenger numbers and trains.

“Queenslanders want a safe, reliable and comfortable train system – they do not want to be worrying about being assaulted on their way home,” she said.

“Simply having more cameras to tell you who committed an offence is not enough — we need to prevent these from happening in the first place.”

Anyone with information which could assist police with their investigations should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au.

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