Police issue warning over clown-masked men 'scaring' children

Several suspicious incidents of people approaching children have been reported in Tonbridge and Tunbridge Wells

Samuel Osborne
Sunday 18 October 2015 13:42 BST
People wearing clown or Halloween masks have been deliberately trying to scare pupils
People wearing clown or Halloween masks have been deliberately trying to scare pupils (Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

Police have urged parents to remain vigilant after reports of people wearing clown masks scaring children walking to and from schools.

Several suspicious incidents involving people in vans approaching children have been reported to police in Tonbridge and Tunbridge Wells, in Kent.

In some instances, people are reported to have been wearing clown or Halloween masks and deliberately trying to scare pupils.

Tunbridge Wells Chief Inspector Dave Pate said: "We are still working to establish whether any offences have been committed.

"However, I want assure parents that we take the safety of all children very seriously and have extra officers on patrol around schools. I would also ask parents to make sure they remind children how to keep safe."

Last week, The Mirror reported that Hillview School head teacher Elaine Buchanan sent an email to parents warning them about the incidents.

She wrote: "Dear parents, It has been brought to our attention that some of our students have been approached in the vicinity on separate occasions (one outside Sainsbury's and another outside Olive's) by two people wearing black outfits with white clown masks.

"We have reported this to the police with whom we are actively working.

"We are advising students to go straight home after school today and not to loiter about anywhere."

Chief Inspector Pate added: "If any child is approached or has any concerns about people behaving suspiciously they should report it immediately to their parents or schoolteachers who can then report it to police."

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