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Simon Dobbin death: Five men arrested on suspicion of murder of Mildenhall father

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Detectives investigating the death of a Mildenhall man who was left permanently brain damaged in an attack by a gang of football hooligans have arrested five men on suspicion of murder.

Cambridge United fan Simon Dobbin was left needing 24-hour care and unable to walk or talk after the 90-second attack following a match in Southend on March 21, 2015.

He died in his sleep aged 48 on October 21, 2020.

Simon Dobbin
Simon Dobbin

Medical tests showed there was a direct link between his death and the injuries he suffered and Essex Police began treating his death as murder.

Five men, aged 30, 34, 39, 45 and 27, were arrested this morning at addresses across south Essex.

They are in custody and will be questioned on suspicion of murder.

Simon with wife Nicole
Simon with wife Nicole

A number of people are being treated as witnesses and are also being interviewed today.

Detective Superintendent Stephen Jennings, of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, is leading the investigation into Simon’s death.

He said: “Investigations into Simon’s death showed a direct, causal link to the injuries he sustained in Southend on the day he was attacked in March 2015.

“As a result of those findings, we began treating Simon’s death as a homicide and a new investigation was launched.

“As part of that investigation, this morning we have arrested five people on suspicion of murder.

“We are also speaking to a number of people who we are considering as witnesses in order to gather their accounts.

“Simon’s wife, Nicole, and their daughter Emily have been kept updated on our progress every step of the way.

“Simon was a completely innocent party in the disorder that took place that day and his family have been through an unimaginable time.

“The injuries Simon sustained that day did not just change his life, they also changed the lives of Nicole and Emily.

"As a team, we will do everything we possibly can to secure justice for Nicole, Emily and Simon’s wider family and friends.”

About 24 people attacked Simon and his friends following a match between Cambridge and Southend United.

He spent a year in hospital and rehabilitation before returning home to Mildenhall.

Twelve men were jailed for violent disorder offences, with sentences ranging from 16 months to five years, and another man received a suspended sentence.