A LIVERPOOL man who made vile remarks about the Hillsborough disaster in a four-minute online tirade escaped prosecution – because the rant was not offensive enough.
Aaron Lawrence, 25, uploaded the foul-mouthed video to Facebook last month, in which he wished Scousers dead and branded them drug addicts.
The Toxteth musician also made references to the massacre of 12 people by Derrick Bird in Cumbria.
He had pleaded guilty to a charge of sending grossly offensive electronic material and was due to be sentenced at the city’s magistrates court.
But despite his plea, the Crown Prosecution Service withdrew evidence claiming the footage made "no threat to any individual and does not break any court order".
Chief crown prosecutor for Merseyside, Paul Whittaker, said: "I have concluded that the comments do not reach the high threshold required to be grossly offensive and there is therefore insufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction.
"I have decided that the case should be stopped."
Merseyside police’s hi-tech crime unit launched an investigation last month after the video surfaced online.
They were alerted when people expressed their shock at Lawrence’s comments on Facebook and Twitter.
In the bizarre rant, he tells how fans at Hillsborough "squashed yourselves" and says Liverpool is "lucky" he is not Derrick Bird.
Mr Whittaker said: "[The film] does not make a credible threat of violence when referring the Cumbria shootings; rather the defendant indicates that he is not going to respond in that way.
"In considering whether the footage may be considered grossly offensive, I have noted that the reference to Hillsborough amounts to a one line comment in a film of almost four minutes.
"While we can never forget the effect of the Hillsborough disaster on the people affected, the content of the whole message presents as an irrational and sweeping statement in which the defendant is protesting against perceived mistreatment he’s suffered whilst living in Liverpool, which few would seem likely to place much credit in.
"This is exacerbated by the irrational manner of his delivery."
Lawrence admitted posting the video to Facebook but others, unknown to him, then posted it on YouTube.
He contacted police when he realised that it had been broadcast to thousands.
Mr Whittaker said: "It is clear that the video was given to a wider audience than was ever intended.
"The suspect took action to remove the content and it was he who informed the police at an early stage."
Lawrence, who was born in Liverpool and grew up abroad in Greece before moving back to Merseyside, regularly performs as a guitarist in the city.
Social media videos can amount to a criminal offence if they contain credible threats of violence, specifically target individuals, breach court orders or are grossly offensive, indecent, obscene or false.