TV presenter Matthew Wright has apologised for making jokes while discussing the first murder on the Western Isles in 43 years.
During Tuesday’s The Wright Stuff, he did a mock Scottish accent and said “there’s been another murder”, copying a phrase from detective show Taggart.
The murder of Liam Aitchison, 16, was discussed during a newspaper review.
Panel member Charlie Baker described the probe as “the longest ever episode of Taggart”.
In his apology, Wright, who presents the Channel 5 morning discussion show, said it had not been his intention to “belittle” Liam’s death.
He added that those campaigning for people to complain to TV watchdog Ofcom should “grow up”.
A campaign, called Report The Wright Stuff to Ofcom, has been launched by islanders on Facebook urging complaints to be made to television regulator.
The Facebook page has more than 680 followers.
The SNP MP for the Western Isles, Angus MacNeil, said he had been contacted by a large number of constituents who were disgusted by the Taggart references.
Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, the Western Isles’ local authority, has made a complaint to Ofcom.
Liam’s death marked the first murder on the Western Isles since the late 1960s.
There was a murder inquiry on the islands in 2006 after Murdo MacDonald, 56, was beaten by three men in Stornoway and later died from his injuries.
But charges against three men were reduced to serious assault.
On Wednesday’s The Wright Stuff, the presenter said: “I know that some of you have been upset by some comments made during yesterday’s newspaper review about the murder of Liam Aitchison in Stornoway and I would like to apologise if that was the case.
“Certainly, no intention on my part to belittle the seriousness, or the tragedy of this story, or to offend anyone who knew Liam.
“You know me, I have been touched by death too many times to belittle anything like that.”
He added: “Not helped by people running campaigns ‘report Matthew Wright to Ofcom’. I mean, grow up folks.”
Northern Constabulary has not commented on the row.
The force launched the murder inquiry on Monday following a post-mortem examination on Liam.
His body was found in the Steinish area of Lewis last week.
Liam, who was originally from Uist, had been reported missing after last being seen in Stornoway on 22 November.
Det Ch Insp Kenny Anderson said on Monday there had already been a “very positive” response from the community in Stornoway.
In a statement released last week, his family told of their “heartbreak” at his death and urged anyone with information to contact the police.
Mr MacNeil said he would be registering a complaint with Ofcom.
He said: “This is a very sad time for the family of Liam Aitchison, and his murder has stunned the local community.
“To see Matthew Wright on his Channel 5 programme yesterday making jokes about the tragedy and behaving as he did is beyond belief, and has disgusted everyone who have seen the programme.”
Matthew Wright in murder joke row