NAMPA - It's a nationwide phenomenon that has now hit Idaho: creepy clowns. The Nampa Police Department got word over the weekend of a reported clown threatening online to hurt people.
"Thankfully we didn't come across any creepy clowns and so therefore in our area here I believe it was somewhat of a hoax," Nampa Police Sgt. Tim Riha said.
The Facebook page with the threatening posts has since been taken down. Nampa Police questioned an individual about the page, but later determined it wasn't them. Riha says it's not illegal to dress up like a clown and walk around town, but added it is illegal to make threatening posts of hurting someone over social media.
"They could potentially be charged with some kind of crime for making those threats. Obviously, you have to have the ability to carry out those threats for it to really be a crime," Riha said. "Once they start dressing up in clown suits and taking pictures with weapons and things like that, than that could be construed a crime."
Reports of clown sightings have emerged all across the nation from South Carolina to Oregon to Idaho. Police believe that it's just a trend right now. They say people are seeing others do it, so they decided to do it. Riha added it's not funny and could end up with somebody getting hurt.
"Remember that if you do dress up in a clown suit and decided to walk around town that you could be putting yourself in danger as well," Riha said.
It's a phenomenon that has struck some fear into people like Wanda Jennings, a real clown who goes by the name Miss Bee Havin.
"There is a little fear, and yeah then the people will be scared of us because we're the good guys and they're the bad guys," Jennings said.
Jennings added that someone would dress up like a clown and instill fear in people is sickening.
"It is so against what we are trying to do. We're trying to bring joy. Children love clowns," Jennings said. "They're not trying to be clowns. They're trying to scare people."
Mountain Home, Twin Falls, and Shoshone County have all seen reported calls of creepy clowns.
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