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BBC presenter James Kelly faces backlash over mouse killing tweets

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 2/03/2017 Chloe Chaplain

© Provided by Independent Print Limited A BBC newsreader has come under fire after joking about his colleague stamping on a mouse to kill it.

Radio 2 presenter James Kelly tweeted a picture of a mouse in the studio, writing: “This little fella… #newsmouse.”

But then he later wrote: “A World Service colleague has killed the #newsmouse with his boot! 'It would have chewed through our cables' was the reason given. #Brutal.

“RIP #newsmouse.”

One follower was quick to criticise his comments, writing: “That is cruelty and against the law....not humane. Maybe needs reporting,”

Kelly responded that he “didn’t approve either” adding: “I guess it was quicker than a trap or poison.”

And his critic, whose twitter name is Tina, hit back: “It's not about approving-it's illegal. Happy to notify RSPCA.”

Kelly then implied the woman needed to get some perspective on the situation, writing: “You do know cats kill mice don't you? Usually only after horribly tormenting them for entertainment #justsaying #perspective”

The following day, he joked: “After last night's unfortunate event, I think any mice will be steering clear of the WS desk from here on in...”

Mr Kelly later deleted the tweets.

Animal welfare group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) criticised the incident, labelling it “cruel”.

Peta director Elisa Allen told The Sun: “Mice may be tiny, but they certainly feel pain, just as any dog or child does. They deserve compassion – or, at the absolute least, to be treated humanely – not to be stamped on by someone acting like a lout.

“Just as using glue traps to kill mice is hideously cruel, so, too, is stamping on them.

“PETA will be sending the BBC a humane rodent trap so that any unwanted guests can be gently caught and released, unharmed, outdoors – which is a solution that everyone, including the mice, can live with.”

Mr Kelly and the BBC have both been contacted by the Standard for comment.

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