Durham Police Aren’t Clowning Around

Durham, ON, Canada / channel12

Durham Regional Police have had their hands full lately dealing with clown related calls.  In most cases, it has been regarding people dressing up to scare others, but one legit clown says it’s just a cry for attention.  Joe Scarpelli has our top story.

Pepper the Clown does birthday parties, barbecues and events, but one thing she doesn’t do is intentionally scare people.

“I’m all about the humour.  I want to make a difference with kids.  I like empowering kids.”

Diane Pepper has been a professional clown for 26 years.  She’s much different than those participating in the creepy clown phenomenon.  It’s been happening around the globe.  Pepper says it’s a misrepresentation of her industry.

“It’s unfortunate.  You’re giving the wrong impression.”

And that trend is happening locally.  Durham police have received more than 30 calls regarding clown sightings and recently charged three teens with causing a nuisance after catching them driving in a car wearing masks and trying to scare others.  Sergeant Bill Calder was concerned after reading on social media that some residents are threatening to address the situation themselves.

“They’re basically saying that they will take the law into their own hands.  They’re saying you’re not going to be scaring their child and they’re not going to wait for the police and they’re going to do something about it.  That’s a big concern for us.  We don’t want people to do that of course.  We want them to call us and we can handle it properly.”

As for Pepper the Clown, she believes those wannabe clowns are doing it for the wrong reasons…

“They’re doing it because they want attention.”

And she has a solution, when she would visit schools, she would single out those attention seekers.

“They loved it.  They just glowed.  That’s all they want is a bit of attention.  They probably didn’t get enough at home or at school or at work or whatever.  They’re just acting that out because they need that rise.”

Pepper says she plans to continue being a clown and won’t let those creepy clowns ruin her act.

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