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A killer knifed his friend to death and tried to cut his head off to “make sure that he was dead”.
Matthew Jones, 41, stabbed William 'Willy' Phelan, 39, seven times in the chest his own home.
He then ‘abandoned’ his body for weeks, which was only found after police forced their way into his flat, the Manchester Evening News reports.
Police found a handwritten note saying “gone on holiday” with Jones’ DNA on in the flat in Harpurhey, Manchester.
Prosecutors said he had tried to cut his head off, with Jones later saying he “wanted to make sure that he was dead”.
He now faces a life sentence after being convicted of murder at Manchester Crown Court.
Prosecutors could not say exactly when he killed him as Jones did not tell anyone, only that it happened in late January 2018 or early the next month.
But it was not until March 19, 2018, that the body was discovered after police forced their way into his flat.
Jones' fingerprints were found on a knife recovered from the scene.
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The two men, who both suffered from paranoid schizophrenia, became friends while being treated for mental illnesses in hospital.
They would sometimes introduce each other as being their 'brother'.
After being discharged from hospital they moved into flats in the same area, provided by mental health services.
Healthcare workers who went to visit Mr Phelan noticed Jones was sometimes present.
They also spotted signs of alcohol and drug misuse.
Before his body was found, Mr Phelan's family and healthcare workers had been unable to contact him so police decided to break the door down.
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A key was found snapped off in the front door lock.
Prosecutors claimed this was “a deliberate attempt” by Jones to stop others “from getting easy access to the flat and discovering the body”.
Rob Hall, prosecuting, said: "A handwritten note was discovered in the hallway saying 'gone on holiday'.
“This also included a DNA profile fingerprint from the defendant, we say is consistent with being hung in the letterbox."
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Evidence suggested Jones had 'washed himself' after the killing, with his blood staining and his DNA found on bath taps.
Days later, he was recalled to hospital and sectioned.
It was only about a year later he was deemed fit enough to be interviewed by police.
Mr Phelan's family said: "We can’t begin to imagine life without William. He was a beloved son, brother, uncle and friend with a heart of gold.
"We can’t believe this has happened and that he has been taken from us in such a sickening, cruel and heartless way.
"He was a kind gentle guy who wouldn’t hurt anyone; he was always smiling and loved listening to his music.
"We will love and miss him always."
Sentencing was adjourned until Monday.
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