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Home » Criminal Law » Carolina Clowns Creeping in Local Woods

Carolina Clowns Creeping in Local Woods

a clown in the woodsThe concept of clowns as “fun, cool people who are great around kids” hasn’t been widely accepted since Stephen King poisoned the waters with It.

Clowns used to be fun.

They were the manically depressed, drunk bastards of the circus — comic relief via good old self-deprecation (a comedic route still very much explored today, although we’ve mostly dropped the nightmare costumes). Now, thanks to Stevie K, modern clowns are raised conversationally in the near-exclusive context of fear.

With all this in mind, it’s terribly unnerving and strangely unsurprising that clowns are trying to lure kids into the woods all of a sudden. Because let’s just be honest here: that’s exactly the sort of thing we imagine clowns doing whenever we imagine them.

So far, the clowns have had no success with abducting people (knock on wood). But they’re still out there, somewhere. Supposedly.

The latest incident:

It was 10 a.m. on a Tuesday in Greensboro, North Carolina. At an apartment complex, resident Chris Bass was hanging out on his balcony, located on the building’s rear. In the woods behind the complex, he saw a clown — white face, weird red poof-hair, big shoes, the whole get-up.

Bass’s reflexes were quick, his instincts true. He grabbed a machete and went after that goddamn clown. The pursuit ended when the clown disappeared into the woods. Bass called the police. Over the phone, a dispatcher suggested he put down his machete and await police officers, who would arrive just after the nick of time.

So the clown got away. Greensboro police did a sweep of the woods and surrounding area and found nada, perpetuating the mysteries of who these woodland clowns are and whether or not they actually exist.

For their part, the Greensboro police department seems as frustrated anyone would be when dealing with nefarious, uncatchable clowns. There aren’t any leads out there other than accounts of alleged witnesses.

Greensboro P.D. is, however, making it quite clear how they feel about copycat artists. Clowns in the woods have been trending nationally for awhile now and the blue bloods down at HQ don’t want anybody getting any big ideas. Or, as they put it themselves: they’re “discouraging copycat behavior by individuals who may find it humorous to mimic the suspicious behavior that has parents on edge.”

Staring down the barrel of a clown trend:

Greensboro, North Carolina might be the latest hotspot for woodland clowns, but it wasn’t the first. According to the Washington Post, clown sightings have been roughly triangulated within the Carolinas (that is, places between Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and Greenville).

So maybe this is just a “Carolinas” thing and the rest of us are good.

Still, the fact that none of these clowns have been photographed or captured is somewhat discomforting. There’s a lack of closure. Either the clowns are hooligans causing mischief, a cult growing with the addition of copycats, or the clowns really are murderous kidnappers who keep getting fortuitously thwarted.

Either way, we can be confident that they’re regrouping.

Disorderly conduct, anyone?

Let’s be optimistic and assume that our woodland clowns are just misguided goofs. These can’t get it through their heads that making people legitimately frightened is simultaneously bad and dangerous (for everybody).

Let’s say these clowns (who, in this hypothetical situation, would very truly be clowns) made their way to Tennessee and decided to scare up some folks in the Volunteer State.

Let’s say they get caught. The clowns don’t hurt anybody, nobody hurts the clowns.

They have still committed at least one crime: disorderly conduct.

That’s at a minimum. If another machete-wielding father feels like the clowns have put his family in danger, who’s to say the circumstances don’t get darker? Surely we can all agree that any behavior is at least “disorderly” if it encourages people to run through a public place with a giant knife, looking for someone to cut with it.

Specifically, Tennessee state law defines offenders of disorderly conduct as people who go out in public and try to cause a commotion by being violent or threatening, creating a “hazardous or physically offense condition” just for shits and giggles, or disobeying government officials in matters of public safety. It’s a Class C misdemeanor.

At Turner Law Offices, P.C., our team of attorneys has years of experience working with clients across a wide range of cases involving disorderly conduct. If you’ve been accused of this crime, along with any others, the first step toward protecting your rights is to seek trustworthy legal representation. The sooner you get starting compiling a defense, the better your chances — so don’t wait! Call today, or go online to set up your free initial consultation, and meet with a skilled lawyer who’s ready and waiting to guide you toward the justice you deserve.

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