Hefty jail sentences for Simon Dobbin's attackers
Three men get five-year maximum for violent disorder
Combined jail sentences totalling more than 40 years were handed down to a group of football hooligans at Basildon Crown Court as punishment for a savage attack that left Cambridge United fan Simon Dobbin brain damaged.
Mr Dobbin. 44, was in court to hear the sentences which saw three given the five-year maximum term for violent disorder.
Mr Dobbin was left brain damaged and unable to walk or talk after he was attacked in March 2015. He had been to see Cambridge United play Southend, but he and a friend were ambushed and set upon as they made their way to a nearby railway station.
Ryan Carter, Thomas Randall and Alexander Woods were each given five years while a four-year sentence was handed out to Jamie Chambers.
Judge David Pugh said: “Those responsible for the attack on Simon Dobbin deserve to be treated with the utmost severity, but because the prosecution were unable to say which if any of these defendants was directly responsible for the assault, they face charges of violent disorder.
“Violent disorder carries a maximum penalty of five years. Conspiracy also carries a maximum of five years.
“Accordingly, no sentence that I may lawfully pass can in any way be said to properly reflect the harm that has been caused to Mr Dobbin and his family.
“Two defendants, Randall and Alex Woods, had blood on their clothes. DNA established it matched that of Simon Dobbin.
“Another defendant, Carter, sent a message later that evening in which he said he had blood on his shoes and needed to get rid of the evidence. He also had an injury to his hands.
“I am satisfied that those three were involved in the fighting on Station Approach and at close proximity to the attack on Simon Dobbin.”
The eight men were jailed for violent disorder:
• Five years for Ryan Carter, 21, of York Road, Southend
• Four years for Jamie Chambers, 24, of Coleman Street, Southend
• Three-and-a-half years for Lewis Courtnell, 34, of Stadium Road, Southend
• Three-and-a-half years for Scott Nicholls, 40, of Little Spenders, Basildon
• Three-and-a-half years for Matthew Petchey, 26, of Lascelles Gardens, Rochford
• Sixteen months for Rhys Pullen, 21, of Wickford
• Five years for Thomas Randall, 22, of Seaforth Avenue, Southend
• Five years for Alexander Woods, 25, of Fairmead Avenue, Westcliff
• Three years for James Woods, 25, of Fairmead Avenue, Westcliff
Three men were jailed for conspiracy to commit violent disorder:
• Three years for Greg Allen, 29, of Western Avenue, Westcliff
• Three years for Phil McGill, 32, of Hornby Avenue, Westcliff
• Two-and-half-years for Michael Shawyer, 31, of Belgrave Road, Leigh-on-Sea
All 12 have been banned from attending football matches for 10 years.
Ian Young, 41, of Brightwell Avenue, Westcliff was found guilty of assisting an offender by hiding the group while police were conducting a search. He will be sentenced in August.