- (Photo: Fred Prouser/Reuters)
James Cromwell, the actor from "American Horror Story," has been arrested in Wisconsin after protesting animal testing at a university meeting on Thursday.
The 73-year-old thespian allegedly disrupted a Board of Regents meeting at the University of Wisconsin over claims that the school tortures cats, according to TMZ.
Cromwell and Jeremy Beckham, a PETA spokesperson, caused a disturbance during the meeting by shouting and holding signs that featured a cat believed to have come from the UW-Madison lab with metal implanted in its head, reported CBS-8.
The animal rights activists were arrested on a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct, but released from jail by Thursday afternoon, according to The Associated Press.
"Today's events are just another attempt by outside activists to draw attention to the cause," said UW-Madison Research Animal Resources Center in a statement. "They have attacked and distorted this research- which has very real benefits for people who are deaf- from every angle imaginable. Exhaustive independent investigation by the USDA, which regulates the use of animals in research, concluded that PETA's allegations are baseless."
The school denies PETA's accusations that dozens of cats a year have been starved, deafened, and decapitated for brain research purposes.
The director of the school's Research Animal Resources Center added that federal agriculture officials have found PETA's claims to be false.
Cromwell is best known for his role as Dr, Arden on FX's thriller "American Horror Story: Asylum" which also stars Jessica Lange. He has also appeared on several television series such as "Six Feet Under," and HBO's "Boardwalk Empire," among others.
His film credits include 1995's "Babe" for which the actor received a Best Actor Academy Award nomination, "The Green Mile," and "The Artist."
"American Horror Story: Asylum" takes place in the Briarcliff Mental Institution in 1964. The series has been well received by viewers, with the third season is set to premiere in the fall.