Clown Update: WH Weighs In on Creepy Clown Epidemic, 'Clown Riot' at Penn State, More Sightings
The White House weighed in on the creepy clown epidemic for the first time during the daily press briefing Tuesday.
"Obviously, this is a situation that local law enforcement authorities take quite seriously and they should carefully and thoroughly review, you know, perceived threats to the safety of the community and they should do so prudently," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters. Asked if the president had been briefed on the clown situation, Earnest said he was unsure.
No doubt Obama found out about the clown epidemic by reading it in the paper, like everyone else.
Penn State Clown Run:
Hundreds of students from Penn State set out to hunt clowns Monday night and into Tuesday amid rumors that clowns were loose on campus.
At least 500 students from Pennsylvania State University took to the streets in search for the clown that was supposedly spotted nearby earlier, the Centre Daily Times reports. Footage on social media shows students running together in the streets. Some students wrote on Twitter that the group was “rioting” and chanting, “We are Penn State!”
“Some people run away from clowns, Penn State runs towards them,” one witness tweeted.
"F*ck the clowns!" the mob chanted as they pursued the blackballed bozos.
In the end, no clowns were caught -- or even sighted -- by the mob, Penn State police Sgt. Mike Nelson told the Centre Daily Times, "but the group did not cause any damage or injuries."
“The cause of this specifically was social media,” Nelson said. “If there were any clowns with this many students out there and with our police responding to calls, we would have ran into it.”
Police are now saying that the Ohio woman who reported being attacked by a knife-wielding clown made the whole thing up as an excuse to get out of work.
Police say they found "inconsistencies" in an 18-year-old Reading woman's story and charged her with making a false alarm, a misdemeanor.
More Clown Threats Against Schools:
The clown menace finally reached California this week as Oakland and Fairfield school districts grappled with creepy clown threats on social media.
Grange Middle School Principal Christine Harrison wrote in a letter posted on the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District website that police found no “credible threat” to the school but that officers would be on the premises as a “precautionary measure.”
Via NBC San Diego:
Fairfield Police Sgt. Jeff Osgood told NBC Bay Area on Tuesday that two school resource officers are on each campus, and that parents shouldn't worry. "Your children are safe," he said.
Osgood also urged students interacting with the person behind the Twitter handle to stop.
"These threats would qualify as terrorist threats under California Penal Code, and that will make them a felony," he said.
One of the tweets, sent at 5:40 p.m. on Monday said: “Fairfield we coming, Grange Middle School and Fairfield High School get ready Tuesday(Oct 4th) At 10:30 am. Happy Clowning hehe.”
On Tuesday evening, Osgood pointed out that it was "well past" 10:30 a.m. and there were still "no signs of clowns."
In Illinois, a school was put on lockdown over clown threats.
A school in Waukegan, Illinois was put on lockdown Tuesday after several students reported seeing clowns taunting them outside. Students said one clown had a knife, one had a briefcase and the third one seemed to have a gun, though it’s not clear whether the weapons were real or props, police said. “The children also reported that the clowns threatened to return Friday to kill them,” Commander Joe Florip of the Waukegan Police Department told local media. Nick Alajakas, spokesman for Waukegan Community Unit School District 60, said the school was recently mentioned in social media posts about the creepy clowns. “It's all part of this national thing going on with creepy killer clowns,” Alajakas said. Police in two other cities – North Chicago and Round Lake – said they were increasing patrols of local schools after “clown-related” threats were made on social media.
In the capital region of New York, clowns posted bomb threats against two school districts on social media.
- The Saratoga County Sheriff's Department informed the Shenendehowa Central School District overnight that they were one of several schools listed in a bomb threat posted online by a group referred to as "clowns."
- The North Colonie Central School District says they became aware late Sunday night of a similar threat against Shaker High School. In this case, the school district says the threat came from a "clown" Twitter account.
Police were investigating and maintaining an increased presence around those schools on Monday.
Colleges and universities throughout Massachusetts have also seen a rash of creepy clown sightings and threats in recent days, prompting the police to investigate.
The juveniles making these threats toward schools are most likely doing it because they think it's funny. Or they think they'll succeed in forcing the school to close for a day or two. What they don't seem to understand is that threatening to commit a crime that could result in death, terror, serious injury, or serious physical property damage qualifies -- as Officer Osgood noted -- as a terrorist threat and a felony. That is why the Department of Homeland Security has gotten involved in some of these cases.
Philadelphia police announced Monday that they caught the bozo who made clown threats to multiple schools on Instagram. It was a 13-year-old girl who said that they were just pranks and that she never intended to harm anyone.
In Virginia, a 13-year-old girl was arrested for "allegedly soliciting an individual on social media who uses a clown as the profile picture to murder one of her teachers," according to the Hampton Police Division.
Super Creepy Clown Sightings:
Most of the clown threats to schools are hoaxes. But not all.
In Chicago, Illinois, a clown has reportedly been stalking, taunting, and chasing children near a school.
A group of parents told police that as they were walking their children to school in the 6000-block of South Damen around 8:45 a.m. Tuesday, a man dressed as a clown ran towards them. The group ran into a nearby school to get away from him, police said.
Parents said they were asked by school officials to pick their students up from school in person at the end of the day in light of the morning's incident.
"They wouldn't even let the kids out the house because of this clown," one parent said.
No one in the group was injured in the incident.
"He had red hair. He had a white face. He was chasing a kid down the park," said Elijah Robinson, Jr., who witnessed the incident.
"We have to step up our police force or step up the safe passageways or whatever we have to do," said Elijah Robinson, Sr.
A "suspicious clown" sighting in Platte City, Missouri, north of Kansas City, also has residents on edge....
Residents at a nearby apartment said a girl was inside when she heard someone rattling the doorknob and speaking with a high-pitched voice.
She says the clown had a green and red wig on and his eyes were blacked out with paint.
Other neighbors KCTV5 spoke with say they saw it too. It’s all anyone here on the street is talking about.
“It’s October and most kids like to pull pranks, but they didn’t seem friendly," said Brandy Pearce, who said she saw two clowns.
Holly Baker called police after she saw one.
"He's jiggling the doorknob, everybody's like, so scared because that's kind of creepy," Baker said.
Speaking of creepy....
Someone is just asking to have his drone shot down right there.
PJ Media has previously reported clown incidents in 28 states: South Carolina,North Carolina, Ohio, Florida, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, Maryland, Georgia, New York, Pennsylvania, Alabama, Indiana, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, Arizona, Nevada,Oregon, Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, Michigan, Illinois, Nebraska, and Idaho. The addition of California and Massachusetts brings the grand total of states affected by the clown epidemic to at least 30.