Essex

Simon Dobbin fan attack: Woman admits harassing victim's wife

Simon, Emily and Nicole Dobbin Image copyright Family Photo
Image caption Simon Dobbin, with his daughter Emily (left) and wife Nicole, was attacked by rival football fans

The sister of a man convicted over an attack which left a football fan permanently brain damaged has admitted harassing the victim's wife.

Cambridge United supporter Simon Dobbin has been unable to walk or talk since the attack in Southend in March 2015.

Thirteen men were convicted over the assault following a trial last summer.

Leanne Nicholls, 39, the sister of one of the defendants, admitted causing harassment, alarm or distress to Nicole Dobbin outside Basildon Crown Court.

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Media captionFurious scenes erupted outside court after the verdicts were returned

Following the verdicts on 14 July, furious scenes erupted outside court involving abuse being hurled at Mrs Dobbin.

Nicholls, the sibling of defendant Scott Nicholls, was later charged in connection with the incident.

She was given a six-week sentence, suspended for 12 months, and was ordered to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work.

Image copyright Essex Police
Image caption Top row (L-R): Alexander Woods, Greg Allen, Ian Young, James Woods, Jamie Chambers, Lewis Courtnell. Bottom row (L-R): Matthew Petchey, Michael Shawyer, Philip McGill, Rhys Pullen, Ryan Carter, Scott Nicholls and Thomas Randall

Basildon Magistrates' Court was told by Nicholls' barrister that she was "deeply ashamed" by what had gone on outside court last year.

At the time, Mr Dobbin's wife told the court her husband had been given a life sentence through the men's actions.

He spent a year in hospital as a result of the attack which happened after his team Cambridge United played at Southend United's ground Roots Hall in March 2015.

Det Ch Insp Martin Pasmore, who led the investigation into the attack, said the men were like a "pack of animals".

Scott Nicholls, 40, of Little Spenders, Basildon, was jailed for three and a half years.

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