Clowns on campus

Spraw: ‘It’s not a good time to be clowning around’ 

By Melissa Carrick
@MelissaCarrick

As Halloween nears, the number of clown sightings and reports increase.

UF’s security is taking this issue seriously as they responded to an incident on Oct. 3 at 6:45 p.m. According to William Spraw, UF’s chief of police and director of security, a male student, dressed as a clown, was spotted walking down the hall of the third floor in Bare Residence Hall that Monday evening.

Once notified, security brought the student to the security office for questioning, confiscated his costume, and turned him over to the Findlay City police. According to Spraw, the case will go through the judicial system and the student could face a criminal charge of inducing panic.

Sidney Towalski, a resident of third floor Bare Hall, was in the hallway when she spotted the clown.

Towalski quickly ran across the hall to tell her friend what had happened when the clown appeared in the doorway, smiled, and then laughed as he walked away.

According to Sidney, the resident assistant consulted with her hall and decided to call security, who arrived minutes later.

“I don’t know why someone would take a serious matter and turn it into a joke like this…it may have been just a funny joke, but not everyone took it that way,” Towalski said, recalling the Oct. 3 incident.

Security urges students to contact them if they see a clown on campus, especially if they feel that there is a threat. All reports, whether there are students or nonstudents involved, will be handed over to the Findlay Police Department.

“As for campus, use your head. Considering everything going on right now — it’s not a good time to be clowning around,” Spraw said.

Reports of clown sightings started in late August in South Carolina. Since then, similar reports have moved across the US and made their way into Findlay.

According to the Courier, the Findlay Police Department has had three reports involving clowns in Findlay. Some of the reports said individuals were being followed and chased. Whatever the incident, though, the Findlay PD says they are taking all sightings seriously.

So far, none of the clowns have been identified. Findlay Police request all incidents be reported to them.

For any questions on safety procedures on campus, visit the security office at 201 Frazer St. or call (419) 434-4799 to report any incidents.

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