Eight men convicted of violent disorder after attack on Cambridge United fan Simon Dobbin
PUBLISHED: 17:06 14 July 2017 | UPDATED: 17:39 14 July 2017
Guilty men to be sentenced on Monday
Eight men have been convicted of violent disorder after an attack on a Cambridge United fan which left with him with permanent brain damage.
Cambridge United supporter Simon Dobbin has been unable to walk or talk since he suffered the horrific attack in Southend in March 2015.
Basildon Crown Court heard that a group of Southend United supporters had planned to “ambush” rival fans.
Nine men were guilty of violent disorder, one had already admitted the charge, three of conspiracy to commit violent disorder and one of assisting an offender.
All thirteen have been remanded in custody ahead of sentencing on Monday.
Speaking outside the court, the victim’s wife Nicole Dobbin said: “Justice has been served for Simon.
“Two-and-a-half years we’ve waited for this result and so I’m over the moon - finally someone is paying for what they’ve done to my husband.
“He’ll never be the same again but we can move forward from this.”
Detective Chief Inspector Martin Pasmore, of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “My thoughts are very much with Mr Dobbin’s family, who have shown amazing courage and dignity throughout the investigation and trial.
“It has taken my team two years of painstaking work to piece together the complex sequence of events surrounding this case and explain the movements and actions of 13 individuals in a manner that ensures that the jury can fully consider the evidence.
“On March 21, 2015 the individuals convicted today acted together as a pack of animals.
“Within minutes a thoroughly decent man was left with a devastating brain injury.
“It was always my intention to identify and bring to justice the person or persons directly responsible for Mr Dobbin’s assault.
“Sadly that was not to be. However that aspect of the case remains open and I appeal to anyone who has information to come forward either directly to my team or confidentially via Crimestoppers.”
Douglas Mackay from the Crown Prosecution Service said: “These men set out on that Saturday with the intention of getting involved in the most horrific violence.
“Their victims were chosen at random and were entirely innocent.
“The jury agreed with the prosecution that each of these men played an active part in planning or carrying out this shocking attack.
“Mr Dobbin and his family have been through an unimaginable ordeal. I can only hope these verdicts bring some sense of justice for them.”
Eight men were found guilty of violent disorder, alongside Rhys Pullen, 21, of Wickford, who had already admitted the charge. They are:
Ryan Carter, 21, of York Road, Southend
Jamie Chambers, 24, of Coleman Street, Southend
Lewis Courtnell, 34, of Stadium Road, Southend
Scott Nicholls, 40, of Little Spenders, Basildon
Matthew Petchey, 26, of Lascelles Gardens, Rochford
Thomas Randall, 22, of Seaforth Avenue, Southend
Alexander Woods, 25, of Fairmead Avenue, Westcliff
James Woods, 25, of Fairmead Avenue, Westcliff
Three men were found guilty of conspiracy to commit violent disorder but not guilty of violent disorder:
Greg Allen, 29, of Western Avenue, Westcliff
Phil McGill, 32, of Hornby Avenue, Westcliff
Michael Shawyer, 31, of Belgrave Road, Leigh-on-Sea
Ian Young, 41, of Brightwell Avenue, Westcliff, was found guilty of assisting an offender by hiding the group while police were conducting a search - but not guilty of conspiracy to commit violent disorder.