Viewers were left “sobbing” and “heartbroken” after watching a TV dramatisation of the murder of schoolboy Rhys Jones.
Harrowing scenes in ITV’s Little Boy Blue saw the 11-year-old gunned down on his way home from football practice in Croxteth, Liverpool, in 2007.
Viewers said it was “hard to watch” as actress Sinead Keenan, who played Rhys’s mother Melanie, held him as he lay bleeding on the ground.
Hundreds of tweets were from people saying they were “heartbroken”.
Many viewers wrote messages sending their thoughts to Rhys’s parents Melanie and Steve, who gave their blessing to the programme.
Others expressed their anger at killer Sean Mercer, who was 16 at the time.
Taboo actor Stephen Graham played Detective Superintendent Dave Kelly in the programme, which explored the impact of the crime amid a wave of gang violence.
The drama was written by Jeff Pope, executive producer of The Moorside, about the faked kidnapping of schoolgirl Shannon Matthews.
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