Creepy Clown Craze

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This clown was seen walking down a road in West Virginia in mid-September.

This clown was seen walking down a road in West Virginia in mid-September.

When October kicked off, people celebrated in many different ways. Some people got excited for the fall weather, while some people celebrated with Pumpkin Spice Lattes. However, some people decided to kick off this spooky month in a much different way.

Since the beginning of October, there have been numerous sightings of alleged “killer clowns” all across the country. Videos on social media show clowns hiding in the woods waiting to chase people who walk by, while others show clowns who have more sinister motives.

Hundreds of creepy clown sightings have been reported all over North America, South America, Europe and New Zealand. Many of these incidents have lacked evidence of criminal activity, while others have lead to arrests.

“I’ve heard about them, but I don’t think of them as a real threat or concern,” said Walter G, 7th grader.


The killer clowns have been in the media on and off since 1990, but recently re-emerged on social media around the beginning of October. Many different accounts were created on Instagram and Facebook, all of them claiming to be killer clowns.

“I think in some parts of the country they are real, but probably not in Virginia,” says Steve K, 8th grade.

Some clowns, however, go beyond social media. For instance in Hamilton County, Ohio, Reading Community City Schools (RCCS) had to shut down due to a killer clown attack. A woman in suburban Cincinnati was sitting on her porch at 4 am, when a man dressed in a striped outfit, a red wig, and a white clown mask attacked her. During the attack, the clown made many verbal threats towards students in Reading Community City Schools. The woman reported these threats to the police and a decision was made to close RCCS; homecoming activities were postponed as well.

“I think they’re real because I saw on the news that someone dressed as a clown kidnapped a kid in Ohio,” said Gavin C, 7th grade.

Stephen King's clown character, Pennywise, has terrified readers since he appeared in his novel It in 1986.

Stephen King’s clown character, Pennywise, has terrified readers since he appeared in his novel It in 1986.

There are many theories as to why clowns have come out as threatening presences, but one of the more interesting ones revolves around It, a Stephen King novel and movie.  The theory is that all of the creepy clowns started out as a promotion for the premiere of the movie It (1990).

It was a two part movie special on ABC in November of 1990. It was a horror classic, with Pennywise the Dancing Clown as the main antagonist. Many people think that the producers of It hired people to dress up as clowns and walk around scaring people to get people excited for the remake.  It is set to have a remake in late 2017.

Stephen King has urged an America put on edge by recent clown sightings that it’s “time to cool the clown hysteria”.