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Thug goes free for spray paint attack on man who died

Homeless: Michael
Cash sitting at his
regular spot. He
was found dead
days after the
paint attack

A DECORATOR has been given a community order after using his son’s water gun to spray paint on a homeless man who died days later.

Aaron Jones had taken a picture of homeless Michael Cash the week before and uploaded it to Facebook with the caption: ‘About time this spice head got removed from the back of Tesco. Smile for the camera.’

Days later, he returned to the Tesco Express in Normanby, near Middlesbrough, and asked a security guard to film him ‘having a laugh’ with Mr Cash, claiming he was going to spray him with a water pistol.

‘Out of order’: Footage of Mr Cash being hit with red paint

The guard was shocked to see Jones, 33, retrieve a Super Soaker water gun with paint dripping from it, and refused to film him.

Prosecutors said that both Mr Cash, 32, and Jones remained silent throughout the attack, which, according to prosecutors, lasted ‘ten to 30 seconds’. During that time, red paint was sprayed over Mr Cash.

When the security guard told Jones his actions were ‘completely out of order’, he replied: ‘Well, he won’t be coming here now,’ the court heard.

Footage of the spray paint assault was uploaded to social media.

Three days later, on September 12, Mr Cash was found dead in a cemetery in Middlesbrough.

Admitted assault: Aaron Jones yesterday in the mask and how he looked just days after the spray paint attack (below) PICTURES: NNP

Cleveland Police have previously stressed his death is not being treated as suspicious, and there is no connection between it and the paint attack.

Appearing at Teesside magistrates’ court, Jones, of Middlesbrough, admitted assault and criminal damage.

He was given an 18-month community order, and told to pay £270 costs.

He did not comment as he left the court and tried to hide his face by wearing a green Frankenstein’s monster-style mask.