Video report by ITV News Anglia's Charlie Frost
Five men have been arrested on suspicion of the murder of a football fan who was attacked on his way home from a match seven years ago.
Simon Dobbin was left with permanent brain damage after being assaulted in Southend, following a Southend United vs Cambridge United match on 21 March 2015.
He died five years later, on 21 October 2020, at the age of 48.
An inquest last year established a causal link between the attack and his death, leading Essex Police to begin investigating his death as murder.
Five men aged 30, 34, 39, 45 and 27 were arrested on Friday morning at addresses across south Essex.
Essex Police released footage of the arrests on their Youtube page.
The men are in custody and being questioned on suspicion of murder.
Det Supt Stephen Jennings talks about getting justice for the Dobbin family
Det Supt Stephen Jennings, of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, who is leading the investigation, said: “Investigations into Simon’s death showed a direct, causal link to the injuries he sustained in Southend on the day he was attacked in March 2015.
“As a result of those findings, we began treating Simon’s death as a homicide and a new investigation was launched.
“As part of that investigation, this morning we have arrested five people on suspicion of murder.
“We are also speaking to a number of people who we are considering as witnesses in order to gather their accounts."
Speaking to the media outside Southend Police Station on Friday, Detective Superintendent Jennings vowed the force would do "everything we possibly can" to get justice for Mr Dobbin's family.
"It will mean everything to them (the family), it would give them closure," he told ITV News Anglia.
"I think it would just have an impact, not only on the community in Southend, but across the UK because this is something that has hit the heart of the UK - just because the nature of it and what Nicole (wife) and Emily (daughter) had to deal with for so long."
Detective Superintendent Jennings also confirmed the force are hopeful they will get enough evidence to identify who specifically assaulted Mr Dobbin.
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