Posted: Tue 11th Oct 2016

Police Warning To Those Taking Part In ‘Clown’ Craze…

This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Oct 11th, 2016

Police in Gwent are warning that action will be taken against anyone caught taking part in the ‘clown’ craze after an increase in reports over the weekend. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The craze, that involves people dressing up as clowns to deliberately scare or intimidate members of the public has now been reported in Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Monmouthshire, Newport and Torfaen. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Officers are now warning of the repercussions of such crimes. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Chief Inspector Paul Staniforth explains: “We’ve now received 18 reports of people dressed up as clowns throughout Gwent. Some of the reports have included, clowns running through gardens and peering through windows, lurking around shopping centres, parks and schools and jumping from trees. Fortunately, to date, we’ve had no reports of anyone being harmed during these reports. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“The behaviour of these individuals has the potential to cause shock and panic and we are extremely concerned that this could result in somebody becoming seriously injured or unwell. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“Gwent Police will not tolerate such behaviour and anyone seeking to cause distress and potential harm to anyone will be arrested for a Public Order offence (Public Order – Section 5: Harassment, Alarm or Distress or Section 4: Threatening, Abusive or Insulting). They could then potentially end up with a criminal record. In addition to this, if you are caught carrying a weapon or an imitation weapon the consequences of your criminal actions will be a lot more serious. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“Another serious issue that people taking part in this craze are not thinking of is the impact on our resources. Every call that comes in, is taking our officers away from people that need us most. My message is to those thinking about involving themselves in these sort of crimes is THINK – think about the impact on the children, the elderly, the public and the consequences of what you’re doing.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent, Jeff Cuthbert, said: “We want people to enjoy themselves and although the creepy clown craze may seem like harmless fun on the surface, it is quite frightening to those who experience it, especially for young children and older people who may feel vulnerable. We have heard how children have been understandably upset and distressed by some incidents. People need to think about the consequences of their action on others. This practice could be dangerous as calls from distressed residents can tie up resources which should be responding to more serious incidents.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Spotted something? Got a story? Email News@News.Wales

More from Gwent Police

Statement From Chief Constable Peter Vaughan In Response To The Events In Westminster

Gwent Police

Road Traffic Collision Between Pedestrian And Car: Clarence Place, Newport

Gwent Police

Dispersal Order – Brynmawr

Gwent Police

Update: Road Traffic Collision On Chepstow Road

Gwent Police

Theft Of Purse From Home Bargains Store In Cwmbran

Gwent Police

Theft From Boots, Commercial Street Newport

Gwent Police

Latest from News.Wales

Improvement Reports Emerge for Barry School Lockdown Situation

Vale of Glamorgan Council

Neath Port Talbot Council to Discuss Arrears Prevention Policy

Neath Port Talbot Council

Neath Port Talbot Council Implements Strong Cyber Security Measures for Online Systems

Neath Port Talbot Council

Swansea Business Case to Explore Heat from Data Centre for District Heating Network

Swansea Council

Planned Children’s Home in Rhondda Requires Planning Permission, Councillors Decide

Rhondda Council

Pub in Caldicot Granted Permission for New Sign and Lighting

Monmouthshire Council