By Cleve Bryan


PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A local fast food chain is responding to video showing mice running around in plain sight in one of its restaurants. The rodents were caught on camera inside a Popeyes restaurant in South Philadelphia.

While the employees are away, the mice will play. That appears to be the case the Popeyes Chicken on Broad Street near Snyder Avenue in South Philly.

After seeing a video on social media of mice in the store, Eyewitness News sent our own camera early Thursday morning and saw a mouse scampering around the seats where people sit to eat.

“I think that’s awful,” customer Tawanda Sheard.

Credit: CBS3

After Sheard found out why Eyewitness News was outside the store, she went back in and asked the manager for a refund.

“He said ‘what mice?’ So I don’t know,” Sheard said.

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At some level, the restaurant and city are both aware of the mice. Eyewitness News obtained a report for a health inspection that happened just two days ago. It notes “old mouse droppings observed on storage shelf.”

An employee apparently wiped the mess up and the restaurant passed the inspection but we wanted more answers.

Restaurant manager Rob wouldn’t give his last name but he did address the mice issue.

“It’s open, it’s like mice get through everywhere — the whole city. Philadelphia is the biggest city with mice,” Rob said.

Rob says an exterminator comes to the restaurant every week but “the mice are smart.”

When asked how he could still serve food when there’s mice around, Rob replied “the food, there’s no mice.”

So what do customers think?

“I’m going home to find me something that I know is safe,” one man said.

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“As long as they can get a hold on it and they don’t go in the food, no problem,” a woman said.

A spokesman for with the city’s health department explained the decision to not shut down the restaurant over the mouse droppings.

“This is considered a Good Retail Practice violation, not a Foodborne Risk violation,” the spokesman said. “Foodborne Risk is when evidence of pests are found in food prep and serving areas. Also, the inspector who does this work every day noted that the droppings were old and didn’t feel that this was evidence of a current infestation.”