AN INDEPENDENT review is set to be launched into how police investigated the stabbing of Ryan Passey.

The popular Quarry Bank footballer was stabbed to death in a single blow to the chest when a fight broke out in the old Chicago's nightspot in Stourbridge town centre on August 6, 2017.

Kobe Murray admitted stabbing him but in a shock verdict was cleared by a jury of both murder and manslaughter in February the following year.

The Passey family said the independent review is a ‘big step forward’ into their 'fight for justice'.

West Midlands Police said the review will be conducted by another force and will look at potentially missed lines of enquiry in the investigation.

The review was confirmed in a letter from Deputy Chief Constable Vanessa Jardine to Stourbridge MP Suzanne Webb after first writing to police in 2020 asking for a review.

The force has apologised for the delay in response.

MP Suzanne Webb said: “This news is better late than never but I am very concerned it has taken West Midlands Police nearly a month to officially announce the independent review after telling myself and the family it would do so.

“This has left Ryan’s family in limbo waiting for something concrete to happen and it was an unnecessary and unfair delay for them to endure.

“I first wrote to West Midlands Police in early 2020 asking for a review into the original investigation as did the family. It has taken this long to come to what many might think is an easy decision. That is disappointing, especially as it appears the force lost those letters.

“However, WMP has finally acted, and it should be given credit for doing so. I know the family will welcome this very positive development as do I.

“We need justice for Ryan. If this review helps the family get there, then the wait will be worth it.”

Family friend, Jason Connon has also welcomed the news and thanked Mrs Webb for her support.

“Ryan was the victim of an evil and horrendous act, a very serious crime and deserved the best and most professional of investigations to have taken place,” said Jason.

“We will be meeting Russ our private investigator next week to discuss and set out the terms of reference we want our new review to undertake.

“This is a big step forward in our fight for justice for Ryan”.

A separate civil case, in which the family are hoping to hold Kobe Murray accountable for Ryan's murder, is set to heard on November 8.