The day after increasing police presence at Ansonia schools over threatening creepy clown messages on Instagram, police have arrested two 13-year-old girls and a 16-year-old girl in two separate incidents.
On Tuesday, Ansonia police started investigating posts they said were directed at the Ansonia School system and threatened to shoot up the middle school, then go shoot up the high school. Investigators identified two 13-year-old girls and took them into custody.
The two girls have been charged with first-degree threatening, breach of peace in the second degree, conspiracy to commit threatening in the first degree and breach of peace in the second degree.
Then, on Wednesday morning, Ansonia police investigated a threat on social media that clowns would go to Emmett O'Brien Technical High School and shoot people.
That investigation led to the arrest of a 16-year-old girl who has been charged with first-degree threatening and second-degree breach of peace.
Police said they did not believe the threats were credible, but they added extra police presence at the schools today.
Police said there is no known connection between the two incidents and the three teens have been referred to juvenile court.
"While there was mention of clowns in the posting there is no evidence or information linking today’s suspect with the ongoing clown sightings and threats," Ansonia police said in a news release.
On Tuesday, Naugatuck police arrested two girls who are under 14 in connection with threatening clown social media posts. Ansonia police said the teens charged are not the same girls charged in connection with the threat in Ansonia on Tuesday.
Various U.S. towns have been stepping up patrols as the creepy clown craze stays steady, but Ansonia police are not associating the local case with what’s happening nationally.
In August, children in South Carolina reported seeing multiple clowns lurking in the woods and showing them money.
Twelve people were arrested across Georgia, Alabama and Virginia in the past two weeks for making false reports of clown threats or chasing people while costumed, authorities said on various county police Facebook posts, NBC News reports.
In Connecticut, new laws make it a class C felony to make threats with the intent to cause an evacuation of a school and a conviction could lead to a prison sentence of one to 10 years and a $10,000 fine.
Sightings and hoaxes have spread to more than a dozen states, including New York, Maryland and Pennsylvania in September and have led to elementary, middle schools and high schools being shut down in Ohio and added police patrols in Alabama, Florida and Georgia, according to NBC News.
On Monday, two teens in New Jersey were arrested for allegedly making threatening social media posts about clown attacks at students and residents in the town. Another 13-year-old girl, on the same day, was posting threatening comment with a clown account.