CINNAMINSON, NJ (CBS) – Officials say a 14-year-old wearing a clown mask terrorized a bus of students in Cinnaminson, New Jersey Wednesday evening.
Authorities responded to a call at Cinnaminson Middle School after receiving a report of an individual running around soccer fields in a clown mask.READ MORE: Nurse Practitioner Vaccinating Homebound Philadelphians With Doses That Would Have Otherwise Gone To Waste
Police say the person’s actions terrorized a bus load of students at the middle school.
Authorities say the 14-year-old student was detained by officers.
The juvenile was released to parents pending the filing of juvenile complaints, which will be forwarded to the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office for review.
Police will continue an increased presence at schools to provide an extra layer of security.READ MORE: Philadelphia Doctor Squashes Fears Of Vaccine Hesitancy After Johnson & Johnson Shot Paused
Cinnaminson parent Danielle Schweid agrees with zero tolerance, “I think sometimes we’re too lenient on kids and that’s why they’re able to do what they do.” Her daughter Sydney says creepy clown talk is a big topic of conversation at school.
“It’s just a rumor going around school that they’re going to come and (it’s) around Instagram,” says Schweid.
The clown infatuation is driving costume sales. “Our clown mask sales are up about 3 times compared to a year ago online,” says Brad Butler the chief operating officer of the costume chain Halloween Express.
“In the top 10, eight of them are “evil” or “scary” clown masks this season whereas last year, five of the top 10 were “evil” or “scary”,” added Butler.
Masquerade Costume Superstore in Philadelphia hasn’t noticed a significant increase in clown costume sales, but management hopes a backlash doesn’t cause them to lose business.
“It’s unfortunate, clowns have been around for centuries. You see them in the circus and they do parties and all of a sudden there’s issues. It’s very sad actually but hopefully it will go away,” says assistant manager Raoul Garibay.MORE NEWS: 6-Year-Old Boy Injured, Father Killed In Southwest Philadelphia Triple Shooting, Police Say
Cleve Bryan contributed to this report