The epidemic of creepy clowns has triggered school closures in Washington state and the FBI is investigating. Authorities are taking threats made against specific students and schools seriously.
According to KOMO News, Emerald Ridge High School and Glacier View Junior High in Puyallup were closed on Tuesday after receiving threats of violence. Local law enforcement and the FBI were brought in to investigate threats made by creepy clowns, officials said. Another school in the area – Rogers High School – was placed on lockdown after a creepy clown sighting.
Investigators with the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that a threat was made specifically to Emerald Ridge High School, but also closed Glacier View Junior High since it was close by.
[Update] KOMO News reports that the closures of Emerald Ridge High School and Glacier View Junior High were closed due to threats made by a 16-year-old girl, not clowns. An updated report reveals that a new student attending school just three days at Emerald Ridge High School threatened violence because she was tired of being called a “white cracker.” Authorities said she wanted to blow up the school because of its “racist kids and dumb, rude teachers.” The student has been booked into Remann Juvenile Hall for investigation of felony harassment and threats to bomb/injure.
Other creepy clown sightings in Washington:
Rogers High School was placed on modified lockdown late Tuesday after two individuals with clown masks on were seen in the woods possibly holding a knife. Deputies found two masks left behind in the area later on.
— Keith Eldridge (@KeithKOMO4) October 4, 2016
Classes in Puyallup were closed on Tuesday due to threats from creepy clowns “out of an abundance of caution for our students, staff and community,” Scott Engle of the Puyallup police said.
Engle said that at 4 a.m., the police received information about a threat of violence made to Emerald Ridge High School. The sheriff’s office and Puyallup police are actively investigating the threats purportedly made by creepy clowns. The FBI is collaborating with local law enforcement in its investigation.
Authorities aren’t elaborating on what the threat was or how they found out about it.
Two other local Washington school districts are dealing with threats and disruption from the creepy clown frenzy. Moreover, police and school officials in Federal Way are investigating social media accounts of “creepy clowns” making death threats and targeting students at Thomas Jefferson High School.
Federal Way School District spokeswoman, Kassie Swenson, said Thomas Jefferson High School learned Monday about “rumors circulating on social media of clowns making threats.”
One student was even named in the creepy clown threats, detailing violence to be made against the school.
Swenson said Federal Way school security officials and police are aggressively investigating the threats.
“We are working in tight partnership with local law enforcement to formulate a strategy to respond to these threats,” she said.
A student at Tahoma High School in Covington was arrested at gunpoint by a campus security officer on Tuesday for wearing a clown mask. The student wasn’t armed but faces disciplinary action.
Tahoma School District spokesman Kevin Patterson said due to the negative trend of “creepy clowns” that’s taken hold of the nation, students shouldn’t come to school dressed as clowns.
“Having fun is fine, but this time people are genuinely concerned about creepy clowns and no one is taking this lightly – at least at school,” Patterson said. “We ask students to please refrain from wearing clown masks or costumes at this time.”
— SkeletonsInMyCloset (@NibiruGuru) October 4, 2016
News of creepy clowns being spotted in Washington was reported over the weekend when some people dressed as clowns were in Tacoma. There were clown sightings in Spanaway, Graham, and South Hill, according to The News Tribune. No one in clown costumes committed crimes. It’s believed they were people jumping on the bandwagon of creepy clowns putting people on edge. Police have said dressing as a clown isn’t a crime.
Creepy clowns have been in the news for several weeks. Reports of social media threats by clowns and people dressed as clowns with the intent of scaring people have been going on since late August. Twelve people across the U.S. have been arrested for false reports or threats. It began in South Carolina with clowns luring kids into the woods. The epidemic has grown into a joke for several pranksters. Police have urged people not to seek out creepy clowns if they see them out and about because they only add to the problem by causing hysteria.
[Featured Image by Tim Boyle/Getty Images]