Inquest into death of brutally attacked football fan Simon Dobbin opens

Simon Dobbin, before he was injured, at a Cambridge United match Picture: SUPPLIED BY FAMILY

The inquest into the death of Simon Dobbin opened in Chelmsford - Credit: Archant

An inquest into the death of football fan Simon Dobbin, who died five years after being brutally set upon in an attack which left him brain damaged, has been opened.

Mr Dobbin, from Mildenhall, was set upon by a group of hooligans after watching his team, Cambridge United, play away at Southend United on March 21, 2015.

Simon Dobbin's daughter Emily pictured with her dad, who received devastating injuries in the attack

Simon Dobbin's daughter Emily pictured with her dad, who received devastating injuries in the attack in Southend Picture: FAMILY PHOTO - Credit: Archant

Mr Dobbin was left needing round the clock care and could only be fed through a tube. He died in October last year, aged 48.

Yesterday, it was revealed that a forensic post-mortem examination identified a link between the assault and his death.

Acting Det Supt Stephen Jennings, from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “We have received the final report following the post-mortem examination and it shows pathologically there was a causal link between the assault Simon was subjected to, and his death.

“We will now carry out an investigation to see if we can directly and evidentially show who was responsible for his death."

Essex area coroner Sean Horstead formally opened the inquest into Mr Dobbin's death at Essex Coroner's Court, in Chelmsford, today. 

He then suspended it “at the request of Essex Constabulary”, saying that the hearing will resume “at the conclusion of any contemplated criminal proceedings”.

Mr Dobbin's medical cause of death was recorded as “complications arising from hypoxic ischemic brain injury following an assault”, Essex coroner's officer Jo Instrall said.

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A total of 12 men were jailed in July 2017 for the attack on Mr Dobbin. The last remaining prisoner was released on February 5 this year. 

Simon's Dobbin's attackers were jailed for violent disorder and conspiracy to commit violent disorde

Simon's Dobbin's attackers were jailed for violent disorder and conspiracy to commit violent disorder Picture: ESSEX POLICE - Credit: PA

All received a 10-year football banning order.

The Crown Prosecution Service has said that it will "carefully consider any further material that is received from Essex Police".

Since the attack, Mr Dobbin's wife Nicole has campaigned passionately to have the law around violent offending changed.

She met justice secretary Robert Buckland to discuss “Simon’s Law”, which would make violent offenders make payments to the NHS for the rest of their lives.

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Det Supt Jennings added: “I know Simon’s story has touched the lives of many people and we are supporting his family."

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