Creepy clowns – and hoaxes – causing issues around the country

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"Hey guys! Cool it with the clown craze!"

(WXMI/AP) – Creepy clowns are causing all sorts of havoc around the country, even though most of them aren’t even real.

Pranksters are being arrested for making social media threats as creepy clowns, including two 15-year-olds from Van Buren County. In Hampton, VA, a teen was arrested for trying to hire a clown to kill her teacher and in Ohio, a school district was closed for a day after a woman reported being attacked by a clown.  But, she’s since been charged with lying about the attack because she was late for work.

Tuesday night in East Lansing, a student with the Twitter handle “hoecus pocus” tweeted a photo that seemingly showed a creepy clown on the Michigan State University campus.  Her next tweet acknowledges that she “photoshopped” the clown into the picture, but chaos was reigning on the floor of her dorm already and her Resident Assistant had called police.

She did end up having to talk to police.

And, unfortunately, this trend may not be going away anytime soon, with Halloween just around the corner.  Tuesday, it was reported that sales of clown costumes are up 300% over a year ago, so there are probably a lot of clown-wannabes in your neighborhood.

So, some areas are taking a stand.  The New Haven Connecticut school district is banning clown costumes and any “symbols of terror” during this year’s Halloween season.

Stephen King, author of It, which featured a creepy clown preying on children and several other horror novels, even took to Twitter this week to suggest that maybe people should “cool” it.

Other “real” clowns say they are losing business because of the fad, and that they are the “real” victims in the craze.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.



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