Clown craze causes mayhem on social media

Image via National Post
Image via National Post

Schools and RCMP weigh in on bizarre pranking trend

By Mercedes Deutscher, News Editor

A popular prank, which involves people dressing up as creepy clowns and uttering threats to pedestrians, has crossed the border and entered into Metro Vancouver.

Residents, mainly youth in the Lower Mainland, have taken to social media to report their spotting and encounters with these clowns.

Although the pranksters may utter threats, there have been no confirmed injuries or violent actions beyond the threats.

Still, the threats have been enough to put school districts on alert. Notes and newsletters have been sent to parents in several school districts.

“Threats of creepy clowns appearing at schools have now begun to surface in the North Vancouver school district,” Mark Pearmain, North Vancouver School District superintendent, wrote in a newsletter. “Uttering threats against schools for any reason is unacceptable.”

Pearmain continued: “While we understand that students likely believe it is a harmless prank, it truly is terrifying for people and can spark violence. It is also important that students understand the significance of uttering threats against their school.”

The pranks also have the RCMP on the lookout, with the Surrey RCMP asking the public to forward any information on the bizarre sightings. While dressing as a clown isn’t illegal, doing so will make the person wearing the costume more susceptible to questioning and detainment by local authorities. Authorities are also reminding the public that attacking the pranksters is not self-defence, but assault.