The creepy clown scare that has swept through North America since late August has apparently reached Canada.
That seems to be the case as there have been reports that scary clowns have recently terrorized citizens in Edmonton, Halifax, and Toronto.
Numerous arrests related to the so-called creepy clown incidents have already been made, with most of the offenders turning out to be teenagers and in their early twenties.
For instance, on Wednesday afternoon, just after classes in Pope Francis Catholic School on Ossington Ave. were dismissed, two boys threatened and chased students around the property. One of the boys reportedly dressed up as a clown while the other filmed the incident for a YouTube video, The Star reports. The two were aged 15 and 16 respectively.
The Toronto Police arrested the two teenagers as soon as a concerned citizen alerted them to the clown incident. After interrogating the two boys, the police said that they were former students of the school and that they were filming the “clown” footage for a YouTube video.
The two were soon released into parental custody. No charges were pressed against them.
“There were two boys, one dressed in a clown costume, and they were, in a threatening manner, chasing, yelling and screaming with both arms flailing in the air towards the kids that were exiting the elementary school,” said Toronto Police Const. Jenifferjit Sidhu.
While Canada is still in the early stages of a creepy clown invasion, America has been a hot spot for clown sightings for some time now. Everything seems to have started in Greenville, S.C., where there were reports of “suspicious clowns attempting to lure children into the woods.”
This particular incident was followed up by more clown sightings in Alabama, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Kentucky, with arrests made in Alabama and Kentucky. Many of the reports were unverified and involved incidents where clowns have been reported to scare off children, stalk pedestrians, and threaten citizens with a weapon on the street, among many others.
At first, a large part of the American population didn’t think much of the clown sightings, thinking that the incidents were just elaborate pranks perpetrated by teenage delinquents who have nothing else better to do.
The clown scare epidemic, however, has recently gotten more complicated. For one, more and more citizens are getting concerned for their safety on account of the implied threat the clowns pose to the community. Also, the perpetrators have recently focused on terrorizing schools – even elementary schools.
Even more alarming is the rising hysteria the clown sightings have inspired among the community, which led to the arrest of, not clowns, but witnesses who claimed that they saw clowns even when there are none.
To emphasize this last point, anti-clown mobs have started to emerge in some communities, recently in Connecticut. As previously reported by NPR, students “carrying golf clubs, shovels, and hockey sticks” gathered just before midnight in a cemetery to do battle with clowns they heard were always lurking around the headstones.
The anti-clown mob, however, haven’t found any.
The clown epidemic has been so troubling that even famous horror novelist Stephen King was forced to tweet about it. King penned the bestselling novel, IT, whose antagonist Pennywise the Clown have given nightmares to millions of readers for decades.
“Hey, guys, time to cool the clown hysteria–most of em are good, cheer up the kiddies, make people laugh,” King tweeted on Monday.
But even the master novelist’s tweet did nothing to stymie the surge of clown sighting reports, as Clovis police cited a 12-year-old student on Tuesday after he posted threats regarding “Clover Killer Clowns.”
Last week, Police Chief Jerry Dyer said that they are taking the clown incidents seriously and are treating each one as a felony act.
“Their future is ruined because of something this stupid,” he said. “We take this extremely serious, and quite frankly we are fed up. We want this to stop immediately.”
[Featured Image by kobzev3179/Thinkstock]