"NAMPA - It's been a nationwide phenomenon that has now hit Idaho: The Nampa Police Department got word over the weekend of a reported clown threatening online to hurt people.
"'Thankfully we didn't come across any creepy clowns and so therefore in our area here I believe it was somewhat of a hoax,' Nampa Police Sgt. Tim Riga said.
"The Facebook page with the threatening posts has since been taken down. Nampa Police questioned an individual about the page, but later determined it wasn't them. Riha says it's not illegal to dress up like a clown and walk around town, but added it is illegal to make threatening posts of hurting someone over social media."
See the rest here.
More encounters are coming in from Texas.
On Monday night, a man dressed like a clown chased two 12-year-olds with a bat in an Atascocita subdivision, and it is reported the man was later arrested.
Another report came from Baytown, when police arrested a man in a clown mask who was chasing people around a park. There was another clown but he was not caught by police.
PENN STATE CLOWN HUNT
"Some people run away from clowns, Penn State runs towards them."
That is on a time.com article about at least 500 college students at Penn State who went out early today after rumors spread about a clown near campus. Penn State Police Sgt. Mike Nelson said that there have been no credible clown sightings in the area and that "the cause of this specifically was social media. If there were any clowns with this many students out there and with our police responding to calls, we would have run into it."
NEW YORK AND NEW JERSEY: CLOWNS WITH RIFLES AND MORE…
Stories are also coming from New York and New Jersey...
"NEW YORK -- Creep clown sightings continued in New York and New Jersey over the weekend, but NYC officials say there is no credible threat here and that area residents should not be afraid of the clowns.
"In the most recent incident, photos appeared on social media Saturday of a man dressed as a clown and holding a rifle standing on a railroad bridge. The bridge separates Walsh Road and Walsh Avenue at the city of Newburgh and New Windsor border.
"New Windsor Police confirmed to PIX11 News that they responded to the incident, but say no arrests were made.
"In Ellenville on Thursday, police were investigating reports of a man calling himself 'Bubbo Theclown' on Facebook.
"In the Facebook post, Ellenville PD said there had been false reports of illegal acts being committed by someone in a clown costume.
"On Friday, Lindenhurst school officials announced they would be keeping students inside during recess after 'several reports' of clown sightings in the area and a tweet threatening that Lindenhurst would be the next area targeted by the clowns.
"Clown incidents are also being reported in New Jersey, like the one that prompted a 911 call around 7:54 p.m. in a wooded area of Wayne last Wednesday.
"According to NJ.com, a woman told police she was outside the Mack-Cali building near the industrial area by Willowbrook Mall where she saw a man wearing a painted clown face and multicolored wig standing in the woods, staring at her, his hands in his pockets.
"Even though no contact was made, the woman said it felt suspicious and she called police. Police responded and found nothing. The man reportedly returned to the area after the woman left. School security remained on alert.
"Despite the multiple reports, John Miller, the NYPD's deputy commissioner for counterterrorism and intelligence, said his office had investigated several clown threats and 'found none of these to be credible, and we've tried to avoid falling into the trap of putting extra police protection' in areas where the clowns were reported.
"'We're tracking it, but we don't see any real threat here,' Miller said. 'Our main message is: don't believe the hype, and don't be afraid of the clowns."
THE WHITE HOUSE
Even Josh Earnest, press secretary at the White House has been asked about the clowns. "I don't know that the president has been briefed on this particular situation," he said. "Obviously, this is a situation that law enforcement is taking quite seriously."
See more on the phantom clowns here.
How do we explain all this? Just mass hysteria? That's probably at least part of it. But, it doesn't appear that the clowns all across the country will be disappearing anytime soon.
Check back later for more.
|What's with the creepy clowns?|
ONE MORE THING…
Also of possible note… Earlier this year, Benjamin Radford's book Bad Clowns was published. Coincidence?