DANIEL Sharples has been found unanimously GUILTY of murdering Michael Mairs by a jury.

The granddad was punched and kicked to death during a brutal attack in the town centre in October last year, and was even tipped out of his wheelchair by his killer.

And a panel of 11 jurors found 38-year-old Sharples, of Grisedale Avenue in Orford, guilty this afternoon, Wednesday, after exactly 10 hours of deliberations.

He had admitted manslaughter, but denied murder.

Sharples nodded as the verdict was delivered by the foreman, while Mr Mairs’ family cried with relief.

Warrington Guardian:

Michael Mairs

Judge Thomas Teague said: “Daniel Sharples, you have been found guilty of the crime of murder – for which sentence life imprisonment is proscribed by law.

“It will be for me to determine the minimum period in custody before you can be considered for release licence.”

Mr Mairs' family described Sharples as a 'vile bully' after the killer was convicted this afternoon.

In a statement, they said: “What Sharples did on the afternoon of October 6 2019 will live with us forever.

"That day, Sharples set out to kill and our dad was unfortunately caught in the crossfire.

Warrington Guardian:

Floral tributes left at the scene

"It goes without saying that Sharples’ actions were those of a vile bully.

"We will never forget the funny, bubbly, caring man our dad once was.

"We, as a family, would like to thank all the witnesses who came forward and those who tried to help our dad that day.

"We are more than grateful."

A trial at Liverpool Crown Court heard during six days of evidence that the defendant spent the morning of Sunday, October 6 2019, downing pints of lager and sambuca shots in the Looking Glass and Hop Pole pubs.

At around 12.15pm, he angrily confronted his victim– who was drinking with friends under the railway bridge on Winwick Street.

Sharples attacked three of the group, with the martial arts enthusiast landing a sickening karate kick that was described by witnesses as being ‘like something out of a film’ on Mr Mairs.

The 53-year-old was ‘barely conscious’ when his attacker tipped him out of his wheelchair and continued to kick him in the face and stamp on his head.

READ MORE: Shocking footage shows murderer pull victim from wheelchair in ‘vicious’ attack

Mr Mairs was rushed to Warrington Hospital and placed into an induced coma, but he died from his injuries just over three weeks later on October 28 2019.

After the assault, Sharples made baseless accusation that the granddad had sold spice or heroin to his son.

He told police officers that he was ‘glad he did it and would do it again’.

The defendant will be sentenced back at the same court on Tuesday, October 27 – almost exactly a year to the day since Mr Mairs’ death.

Warrington Guardian:

Judge Teague also thanked a member of the public, who cannot be named for legal reasons, who intervened in an attempt to stop Sharples’ attack.

He added: “One of the witnesses displayed great courage in trying to interpose himself between the defendant and Mr Mairs while trying to call the emergency services.

“It’s my intention to ensure that he receives a commendation for his public-spirited behaviour.”