EAST HANOVER, NJ — Police were called Thursday with reports of a possible “creepy clown” near the grounds of Hanover Park high school. The school did not initiate a lockdown, but police cruisers scoured the campus and surrounding areas all afternoon.

According to police sources, the individual they are looking for was wearing just a clown mask and not a full clown outfit. No one has been found at this point. Anyone who has relevant information about this incident is asked to call the East Hanover Police Department at 973-887-0432.

“Creepy clowns” have been in the news a great deal lately, having been spotted in towns across the country. In Greenville, South Carolina, residents of an apartment complex claim a clown was luring children into the woods. This has not been confirmed by investigators. Repeated sightings throughout Greenville followed this first incident, and then reports of “creepy clowns” terrorizing children starting coming in from several states throughout the country. To date, there is no known record of a child actually being harmed or abducted by a clown.

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Experts say that the trend of “creepy clowns” comes back every decade or so, becomes more frequent in the months leading up to Halloween, and is fueled by children sightings, schoolyard rumors, and parental concern. The prevalence of social media has caused these stories to go viral.

There is no law against being dressed as a clown, but there are laws that govern harassment or causing public alarm. If you spot a “creepy clown,” your local police department can determine if any laws are being broken.