PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Police in our area announced Wednesday five more children are charged with allegedly making violent clown threats on social media. Four other children were either identified or charged with making similar threats since Monday.
Many of the kids told investigators it was all just a joke, but for people who make their living as clowns, it’s no laughing matter.
Montgomery County-based Judy Tudy has entertained audiences as a professional clown for more than 30 years. In fact, her entire family clowns.
“I am very proud of having a clown family,” she said.
But the recent wave of kids and teens pretending to be clowns and posting threats of violence and kidnappings is hurting her family emotionally and financially.
“This is my full-time job,” she said. “And already I’ve had people cancel jobs. I’m doing a community day on Sunday and I’m not allowed to come as a clown.”
Just this week, she’s lost several hundred dollars in jobs. It reminds her of another very difficult time in her career.
“When the movie ‘IT’ came out, business was terrible,” Judy said. “Parents allowed their children to watch a horrific movie and it really did affect them.”
Judy said true clowns follow a strict code of ethics and would never harm or threaten children.
“I’ve taken a look at the images of what these clowns look like. It scares me and I’m a clown. I can’t imagine what it would do to a child,” she said.
Even though she’s now afraid to wear her costume in public, she said she won’t let a disturbing trend stop her from doing what she loves.
“No way. I’ve been doing this 30 years. I love what I do. I’m good at what I do and this too shall pass,” she said.