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Local News

Police: Lincoln-Way Central clown threat was joke

NEW LENOX – A Lincoln-Way Central student's threat of "clown violence" was no laughing matter Tuesday for police.

Will County Sheriff's Office Deputy Chief Rick Ackerson said a picture of the school was posted on Instagram about 8 p.m. Monday with the message, “looks like a good school to kidnap and kill. Be prepared for us. #lwc #lincolnwaycentral #clowns #aintclowninaround #thisfriday." Police were notified that evening.

On Tuesday morning, detectives identified a 14-year-old Lincoln-Way Central student as the owner of the Instagram account, Ackerson said. The boy and his mother met with detectives, at which time the teen said the post was a prank.

"[He] said he had heard rumors about clowns being spotted on the trails, and with everything that has been going around about clowns recently, he did this as a joke. He did not think that anyone would take this seriously," Ackerson said.

Ackerson said the teen was released to his mother while the matter is under review by the Will County State's Attorney's Office. The teen may face discipline from the school district.

"People need to understand the consequences of their actions, especially when it involves threats made to a school," Ackerson said. "Unfortunately in today’s day and age, things like this cannot be taken lightly."

Plainfield School District 202 on Tuesday posted a Facebook message saying any threats involving clowns at the schools were "a hoax."

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