Where it started?
So where was the start of this terrible, world-wide phenomenon? The first clown sighting that had occurred was in Greenville County South Carolina. On August 29th 2016, people had started to dress up as clowns, trying to lure children in the woods with bribes. Two clowns were spotted in the woods, trying to lure the kids into an abandoned house with boarded up windows.
The first states where the terrorizing clown events took place in were in states along the East coast of the United States. Some of these states include Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, Maryland, Vermont and Maine.
How fast is it spreading?
The clown epidemic is spreading fast. After the first clown incident late August in South Carolina, there has been cases spreading ever since. From one state, to 39 in less than two months, it is becoming a spreading problem. Now the clowns are moving into other countries. It seems like the more clowns that appear, the more the world is currently at a scare of it. This terrible craze has spread to universities as well. Students are coming together to hunt down these clowns terrorizing campuses and communities.
Countries in which there has been clown sightings include: Canada (Quebec, Ontario and Toronto), Australia (Perth, Victoria, Sydney, New South Wales) France (Paris) Sweden (Halland County, Southern Sweden), The Netherlands (Almere, The Hague, Ruwaard), England (Essex, Wales, Manchester and Newcastle) Ireland (Dublin), Norway (Oslo), and Spain. (Gijon).
Famous clown incidents in USA
On October 5th, a 21 year old David Anthony Talbot-Smith had been arrested, because he dressed in a clown outfit at a local Walmart. People spotted him following cars leaving the parking lot and taunting many people.
On October 6th, three men in west Texas were caught carrying a clown mask, plastic machete, and a bat. 24 year old Ariel Salgado, 20 year old Cesar Ortega and 18 year old Aaron Villescas were only joking around. Nonetheless, they could have been shot at or attacked by frightened residents. In the dark, there is no telling apart fake or real weapons.
A 55 year old man in Portland, Oregon became arrested for wearing a clown mask and boxing gloves outside the windows of Floyd light middle school. When the assistant principal went to speak to him, he threatened him with violence and charged at him.
In New York, a 10 year old boy who ran from a clown lurking in the bushes had claimed a clown approached him. He was afraid he was going to be kidnapped, ran away and hid between two nearby houses calling 911.
A clown frightened 11 students at a bus stop in Indiana. A bus driver in Indiana called the police after a person, dressed in a full clown costume, approached approximately 11 students at a bus stop. The children were very frightened by the event.
Types of Clowns
There is no thing as categorizing clowns during this ongoing clown hype. Besides putting on clown costumes, the perpetrators range from different ages, gender and races. The clowns wear different costumes and their intention is ambiguous. Nonetheless, there are differences among clowns. Some clowns have balloons or carry nothing. Others are always in possession of different weapons. Regardless of what the clowns have in their possession, they are all considered creepy. Although, those with weapons can be considered as killer clowns. It is difficult to tell the difference between clowns. Even if some of them are just pulling a prank, others might have dangerous intentions. Most people that have encountered clowns do not get time to tell if it is just a scary prank. They just take off running when they encounter clowns.
Moreover, some clowns are there just to create videos to go viral on Youtube.
Hideouts of a Clown
Clearly, there is no telling where one will bump into these creepy clowns. Even so, some places could be obvious hideouts for them. The most apparent places to sight a clown could be places that are less frequented by people. These can be for example the woods, back alleys, parking areas, or highways. Still, people have sighted clowns in public areas. CCTVs are now capturing clown footages in homes of people. This also happens in supermarkets, convenient stores, busy streets, and other public places. Furthermore, a lady in North Jersey, U.S.A almost caused an accident. This is because she was being chased by two clowns in a pick-up car, as stated by North Jersey news.
Weapons of Choice
Like I said before, there is no telling difference between clowns. Are they ordinary or dangerous? If you wear a clown costume and carry a weapon, you are then branded a killer clown. Killer clowns are in possession of different weapons. There are incidents where people were chased by clowns with baseball bats. PerthNow News reported an incident where motorists were scared by a bat-wielding clown. This happened in Rockingham, Western Australia.
Another weapon of choice for the killer clowns is a machete. Several news sites reported these machete-wielding clowns. A man driving through Cheetham Hill, England was approached by two clowns that just stared at him. One of the two clowns was in possession of a machete. Clowns are also using knives in some countries. In Halland County, Sweden, a man was stabbed in the shoulder. The clown who stabbed him was carrying a knife.
Meanwhile in England, a 10 year old from Plymouth was threatened by a clown with a hammer that jumped out of a bush. Moreover, an 11 year old girl in Workington was chased by a clown with an axe.
What Things To Keep With You?
There’s no telling what someone’s intention is. You’d want to prepare yourself, but keep in mind that you’ll only act in a case of self-defense. Depending on which country you’re living in, the legislation for self-defense is different. Your best weapon is your own brain. You could avoid an encounter by not being inside or around their hideouts. If there’s no other option, here’s what you’ll want to have with you:
- OC Pepper Spray
This is the ideal choice. Whether someone’s determined or not, this will provide you with a way to make them run off. At the same time, create the opportunity to run off yourself.
- Large Stick
This is most likely a good option if you’re in a rural area. Due to legislative restrictions, it’s not always possible to get a hold of baseball bat.
- A Large Dog
This only applies to those who have one; it’s a better alternative that the other two option above. The least it will do is frighten.
What To Do When You See One?
Now that you know what to kind weapon you should carry, it’s finally time to talk about what you should do when you encounter one. First, identify whether the clown opposes a threat to you; look if it has a weapon. If so, run away! Sometimes they will approach you. If this is the case, run or make them aware that you are prepared.
You might instinctively feel that running is your only option; in a lot of cases I assure you that’s right. It’s a lot of times foolish to be brave when someone with a weapon is approaching you. Calculating your chance of fending the clown off is often done within a mere second. When in doubt, value your own safety by running for your life. When he’s after you though, consider making him aware that you are equipped.
Are you living in Canada or the US? There’s an app developed by a group of Montreal students, devoted to the sightings of clowns. It will allow you to ‘pin’ the area where the encounter you had took place. The app will enable you to see other clown sightings as well. With Halloween approaching, it’s especially useful for parents. Before sending your kids of to trick-or-treat, use this app. In this way, you can see if there have been sightings near you.
This blog was written by Sebastiaan, Dorah and Isabel interns of StuDocu. StuDocu is a website where students can exchange their study documents. For more information, go to Studocu.com.