Threats to schools are never a laughing matter–even when the they comes from clowns.
Both the school and the district make automated phone calls to families to keep them informed threats. This month Rio and the San Juan district warned families about social media posts about creepy clowns coming on campus.
Picking up on an international trend, some people recently dressed up as clowns to try to scare people. While this just sounds like seasonal fun it’s been raised to alarming heights of concern for what should be a simple prank.
For example, many clowns have been attacked due to their creepiness. One of the more common things some of these “killer clowns” do is stare at you through your car window or in some cases bang on your car. This lead to one clown being severely beaten in the face.
An especially viral incident was a video uploaded to social media, which involved a clown being ruthlessly beaten with a baseball bat, first breaking the clown’s knees and then wailing on their face.
One party that this directly harms is genuine clowns, peoples whose jobs are being compromised due to these fake clowns giving all clowns a bad name. Jordan Jones has actively spoken out against clown impersonators he said “Everyone took this as a joke but it’s really become serious now, and I just want all these teenagers to know that it’s not a game anymore. You’re ruining my job and other actors around the world.”
While one might argue that this is instead bringing clowns more advertisement and potentially leading to more bookings of clowns, it still is giving all clowns a bad reputation.
Although some people aren’t buying into the hype, sophomore Michael Mehrdadi said “I think it’s all fake I think the videos are faked, I think the pictures are faked or were taken out of context I think the clowns aren’t real, I think that people are just buying into whatever they see on Youtube, Twitter, Instagram, etc I don’t think there are literally grown men dressing up as literally clowns in a desperate attempt to scare people.”
Some students have said that they’ve seen clowns personally. Freshman Phoebe Wittlake said “I saw one coming home from cheerleading for a Football game and saw one across the street, I just sprinted to my car and got in as fast as I could luckily he didn’t target me”
One student at Rio was directly involved with clown activity.
Sophomore Rebecca Smith said, “This kid in my drama class created this clown Instagram and Twitter account called sad clown where they only followed one person. They (school officials) were able to track him through his IP address then identified him.
There have been some other reports of seeing clowns, such as supposedly seeing one in a car and on the American River trail. At Elk Grove due to threats by an instagram accounts sac.townclowns security has been raised on campus the Instagram post by “sac.townclowns” includes a “School Hit List” that specifically lists Sheldon, Inderkum, Franklin, Elk Grove and Pleasant Grove high schools, as well as Toby Johnson and Smedburg middle schools.
One 12 year old boy in Marysville made an instagram named mozzytheclown where he posted he would roll a die to determine what school he would attack.
The Marysville Police Department announced that they had arrested him on felony charges
This became such a big issue that on Oct. 6 a voicemail was sent from the San Juan district to all families addressing the threats and concerns of these clowns. Vice Principal Robert Kerr said “I’m always concerned for student’s safety some of these reports such as what happened at UC Davis are cause for some concern.” Mr. Kurr is referring to the reports of a clown armed with a knife in West village neighborhood.
Although this began in North Carolina, the killer clown craze quickly spread to the entire nation and just recently spreading to the United Kingdom, Russia and other parts of the globe.
Despite the numerous reports of violence caused from this it is extremely unlikely that this will continue any further than Halloween. Society loses interest in things very quickly nowadays and something like this that has people consistently being arrested will eventually be overshadowed and will die out while we await the next big thing.
In the event of any suspicious activity, in or around a school site, please contact San Juan Unified’s Safe Schools program at (916) 979-TIPS (8477). For immediate threats, please call the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department at (916) 874-5111. The safety of our students and staff is our top priority. Thank you for helping us keep our schools and our community safe.