A Texas high school student has been arrested for posting “clown threats” against school districts and campuses.
He was taken into custody early Tuesday and charged with making terroristic threats, a third degree felony.
Authorities at the Livingston Police Department investigated posts made by a “Larry Brown” on Facebook and the teenager was taken into custody around 12:57 a.m. reported the Houston ABC affiliate.
The Houston Independent School District had several high schools and a middle school targeted and other school districts in the Houston area were also highlighted, including Alief ISD. The threats mentioned killing teachers as they were walking to their cars. The districts, specifically Livingston Independent School District (ISD), said they were taking the threats seriously.
The Livingston ISD posted the following on Facebook on Monday night after it received a complaint about the threats:
The school district had posted a message earlier in the day to let families know that authorities were investigating:
Creepy clown-based threats have been an issue in recent weeks.
Breitbart News reported on September 19 that two Alabama schools where put on lockdown due to similar threats. There were several social media posts and a telephone threat was made that clowns might show up at the schools. Just four days earlier, men dressed as clowns were spotted allegedly trying to abduct children across multiple states, reported Breitbart News.
A 13-year-old girl in Philadelphia made clown threats against local schools, reported the ABC affiliate. The girl told investigators that she and a friend were just committing a “prank” and they never intending to hurt anyone. Police in Washington Township, New Jersey arrested two teenagers in connection with two separate threats. The ABC affiliate reported that disturbing photos were posted on Instagram that included the caption, “hello we are in the Philadelphia area today.” The post included the ominous warning that children would be kidnapped at 5 p.m.
“I really think people should take it seriously, but some other people think it’s a joke, but you don’t know it’s a joke,” Jackie Zou of Mount Airy was reported to say.
“I don’t think pranks that threaten lives are innocent anymore. This nation in 9/11 was invaded from the outside, and we’ve had terrorist incidents since then,” said Frank Farley Ph.D., a psychology professor at Temple University told the Philadelphia, Delaware, and Southern New Jersey area television station.