Police say a person dressed as a clown disappeared into the woods after being chased by a man wielding a machete on Tuesday — the third incident involving a clown in as many days in the Greensboro, North Carolina area.
The North Carolina incidents come after multiple reports of clowns attempting to lure kids into the woods in South Carolina last week.
A “local witness reported that a person wearing a scary clown mask, red curly wig, yellow dotted shirt, blue clown pants and clown shoes exited the woods,” near an apartment complex, Greensboro police said in a statement. “Upon seeing the clown, another witness — an adult male — ran after it yielding a machete. The clown ran back into the woods and disappeared from view.”
Tuesday’s incident comes on the heels of complaints Sunday of a clown trying to lure kids into the woods in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. A second sighting took place nearby later that same evening, reports WTVD, a local ABC affiliate.
Similar to what witnesses told police last week in South Carolina, the suspect in Sunday’s incident in North Carolina allegedly tried to lure the kids with treats. The suspect was reportedly seen by two children and heard, but not seen, by one adult. The suspect fled the area when officers arrived, WTVD reported.
The “clown” had on white overalls, white gloves, red shoes with red bushy hair, a white face and a red nose, witnesses told police.
A second clown sighting happened just after midnight two miles from the first sighting. Officers attempted to locate the subject but were unsuccessful.
All three spots where clowns were reported are in very residential areas near parks/woods, WTVD said.
Greensboro police warned people after the incidents that “although it is lawful to dress as a clown, given the heightened tensions about these entertainers, officials are discouraging ‘copycat’ behavior by individuals who may find it humorous to mimic suspicious behavior.”
The police also said that the recent scares present an opportunity to talk with their children about how to avoid dangerous situations when dealing with strangers in public.
“Parents should tell children never go anywhere with a stranger, even if it sounds like fun,” the police said.