The killer clown craze in Australia: What you need to know

By @ULB1N on
Creepy clown masks are displayed at a Halloween store in the Brooklyn borough of New York City, U.S. October 20, 2016.
Creepy clown masks are displayed at a Halloween store in the Brooklyn borough of New York City, U.S. October 20, 2016. Reuters/Brendan McDermid

The creepy clown sightings that started in the US have now become a worldwide frenzy, even reaching the Land Down Under. Multiple creepy clown sightings have now been reported in all of Australia, and authorities are cracking down on the clowns.

The scary clown fad, which spread like wildfire following the launch of the remake of the Stephen King movie “It,” has now caught the attention of Australian residents and authorities as creepy clown sightings have grown by the numbers. These dressed-up, face-painted creeps have been spotted just about anywhere: at schools, along the highway and even outside of homes.

The sightings continue to surge amidst the police warnings and arrests. In Western Australia, a 19-year-old killer clown was arrested by local police after he chased and intimidated a group of female teenagers at a mall. The Courier Mail also reported about a Brisbane woman who almost hit a clown after it approached her car while she was driving.

A number of the killer clowns are active on social media, threatening that they could be anywhere at any point in time, further adding to the fear and tension of local residents. There’s even a Facebook page called Clown Sightings Australia that publishes “all clown sightings and warnings/predictions in Australia.” According to Morning Ledger, another Facebook page called Melbourne Clown Association Purge Edition has announced the potential areas where “clown purges” might occur on Oct. 31.

The killer clown fad is inspired by the aforementioned Stephen King movie character called Pennywise, the murdering evil clown that inhabits sewers. The initial sightings in the US were originally thought of by most people to be just bad PR stunts, but the incidents never died down and further spread all over the world.

Coulrophobia is the term used to describe fear of clowns, and it is fairly common among people of all ages. A majority of schools in Australia have already banned clown costumes as a means to suppress the genuine fear.