Bay Area officials not taking chances with clown-related threats

They began when a child in SC reported two people dressed as clowns trying to entice him into the woods in August.

Police have received reports of "creepy clown" sightings, threats through the use of social media and vandalism.

Although she and Kathy Cannon enjoy clowning around, lately their smiles have turned into frowns by social media posts of scary clowns threatening to come after people. "Our people that deal in the threat world every day and assess these threats have found none of these to be credible".

"In the last few days there has been a lot of talk (mostly rumor) about individuals dressed as clowns walking around town at night stalking or chasing people with chainsaws", the Hoisington Police Department said in a news release. No violence, but some schools are reporting that people are trolling as clowns on social media trying to get students to react.

"It's a cultural behavior we are seeing", Knudson said about the reports on campus.

The University of Arizona Police Department said they've wasted resources pursuing these claims.

He said they will continue extra patrols around schools and bus stops. Another group of students spotted a clown on top of one of La Crosse's famous bluffs.

- San Mateo Police are looking into a report of a possible clown sighting at a popular park during daylight hours.

"We are taking steps to ensure these threats are not credible and that there isn't a risk to the public", said Officer Matthew McPhail of the Sacramento Police Department.

As for Martinez and her fellow professional clowns who entertain and bring smiles for a living, they want the threats to stop.

The Oct. 5 incident in Woodstock correlated with a nationwide brouhaha over creepy clowns - that is, people dressed in clown costumes who allegedly taunt, menace or otherwise unnerve passersby.

The "creepy clown" craze reached Ventura County on Thursday. Its not a crime to wear a clown costume, McCullough said, and eventually the fad will pass in La Crosse like it has flared up and faded away in other cities. "That will definitely end the stupid clown threat!"

The department received between 20 and 30 calls from concerned students and parents after seeing fake pictures posted on social media on Monday.