If the “killer clown” craze was one that you were hoping to avoid this year, your luck may have run out.
As Halloween approaches, police in Kent are searching for a man who terrified two teenage boys while dressed as a clown and wielding a baseball bat.
A spokesman said: “Kent Police received a report that two teenage boys were approached by a person dressed as a clown in Gadby Road, Sittingbourne between 8pm and 8.20pm on 2 October.
“The boys left the area and a local search by officers did not locate a suspect matching the description. Enquiries to establish the circumstances around the incident remain ongoing.”
The mother of one of the boys told Kent Online the man was wearing a half-mask, red wig, clown shirt, black trousers and red trainers.
She said: “As the boys reached the underpass the clown sat on the floor, laughing and banging his wooden bat. My son was really shook up and upset.”
The trend harks back to 2016 and began in the US, when hype for the remake of Stephen King’s It started to build, before migrating across the world.
An 18-year-old man was jailed in February last year – thought to be the first person imprisoned following the craze that swept across the UK – after chasing a pregnant woman with an axe while dressed as a clown the night before Halloween.
At one stage in 2016 one police force had 14 reports of clowns to deal with in 24 hours, while clown sightings have been reported all the way from Dundee to Plymouth in 2017.