Mysterious individuals dressed as clowns have recently started to turn up on the streets of England.
What started out as little more than a roadside prank has grown increasingly sinister over the last few years with stories of clowns staring at cars from street corners being gradually replaced by police reports involving clowns wielding weapons and children being lured in to the woods.
In Newcastle recently, several schools were put on high alert over threats by clowns while in a separate incident a group of 11-year-old children were chased through a park by five clowns.
According to police officials in Northumbria, there have been several hundred reports of clown sightings in the region including over a dozen that were considered genuine offenses.
Some of the kids are now so terrified by the phenomenon that they are too scared to go out.
“Who’s behind the masks? You don’t know. Nobody knows,” said Charlene Paterson, a mother who has observed the impact of the phenomenon first-hand. “You don’t know if it’s a 15-year-old that’s looking for a giggle or a 30-year-old man who’s looking to do something far, far different.”
“It’s not fair – it’s certainly not funny. Children shouldn’t have that fear.”
Authorities are now actively appealing to the general public not to participate in the craze.