Police believe two men were assaulted in Chelmsford because they were holding hands as they walked along the road.

Officers have launched a hate crime investigation following the attack on Moulsham Street at around 1.20am on Sunday January 26.

Three men were walking along the road - two of them holding hands - when they were approached by two other men.

Two of the group of three were assaulted and subjected to homophobic abuse. The victims were aged in their late 20s and early 30s.

"The victims believe they were targeted due to their sexuality as two of them were holding hands. "We'd like to speak to anyone who was in the area around the time and witnessed the assault or anyone matching these descriptions."

PC Martin Brown, Essex Police

The attackers are described as white, of medium build, and in their early 20s. One was around 6ft tall and wearing a grey top while the other was 5ft 7in tall and dressed in dark clothing.