Police to investigate Danny Baker over royal baby tweet
Police say procedure is routine after complaint about tweet depicting royal baby as a chimp
Danny Baker is being investigated by police after a complaint was made over a tweet he made about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s newborn son, Archie, which featured a picture of a chimpanzee.
The 61-year-old DJ, who was sacked by BBC Radio 5 Live following accusations of racism, issued a statement on Friday to “formally apologise for the outrage I caused”.
The Metropolitan police confirmed a complaint was made about the Twitter post, which showed a black-and-white photo of a well-dressed couple holding the hands of a suited chimpanzee with the caption: “Royal baby leaves hospital”.
The tweet came on the same day that Prince Harry and Meghan, whose mother is African-American, posed with their baby son, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor.
A Met police statement read: “An allegation has been received by the Metropolitan police service on Thursday 9 May in relation to a tweet published on 8 May. As is routine, the allegation will be reviewed and assessed by specialist officers.”
Earlier on Friday, Baker released a statement: “Following one of the worst days of my life I just want to formally apologise for the outrage I caused and explain how I got myself into this mess. I chose the wrong photo to illustrate a joke. Disastrously so.
“In attempting to lampoon privilege and the news cycle I went to a file of goofy pictures and saw the chimp dressed as a Lord and thought, ‘That’s the one!’ Had I kept searching I might have chosen General Tom Thumb or even a baby in a crown. But I didn’t. God knows I wish had.”
Julia Hartley-Brewer (@JuliaHB1)
I want to give Danny Baker the benefit of the doubt,but I’m really struggling to find any reasonable explanation for this tweet, now wisely deleted. pic.twitter.com/EtL1JUIu96
May 8, 2019
The statement added: “Minutes later I was alerted by followers that this royal baby was of course mixed race and waves of panic and revulsion washed over me. Fuck, what had I done? I needed no lessons on the centuries slurs equating simians and people of colour. Racism at it’s basest.
“I am aware black people do not need a white man to tell them this. Deleting it immediately and apologising for the awful gaffe I even foolishly tried to make light of it. (My situation that is, not the racism involved.) Too late and here I am.
“I would like once and for all to apologise to every single person who, quite naturally, took the awful connection at face value. I understand that and all of the clamour and opprobrium I have faced since. I am not feeling sorry for myself. I fucked up. Badly.
“But it was a genuine, naive and catastrophic mistake … I am now paying the price for this crass and regrettable blunder and rightly so. Probably even this final word from me will extend the mania. (‘Dog whistle’ anyone?) I would like to thank friends on here for their kinder words and once again – I am so, so sorry.”