Teen in UK gets criminal record for role in 'killer clown' craze
A teenager has been landed with a criminal record after taking part in the "killer clown" craze sweeping Britain.
Police forces across the country have been called to a string of incidents where pranksters or criminals dress as clowns try to scare innocent bystanders.
Senior officers are warning that the trend, which started in the US, is a waste of police resources and said they would crack down on those causing fear and anxiety to members of the public.
In the latest incident, an 18-year-old man, from Penyrheol, Caerphilly, was issued with a fixed penalty notice and fined £90 for a public order offence.
Gwent Police said they responded to reports that a man was dressed as a clown and intimidating children outside St Cenydd Comprehensive School in Caerphilly.
Chief Inspector Paul Staniforth said: "In this case, not only is this man out of pocket, he will now have a criminal record which will impact his future, including any job opportunities.
"I hope this result sends a strong message to anyone thinking about taking part in this craze, that their five minutes of what they may think is fun really isn't worth it."
In Kent, police revealed they received reports of 59 clown-related incidents between October 7 and 10.
Some involved people dressed up and jumping out in front of vehicles, staring at members of the public or children chasing other children.
One man, 23, from Sittingbourne, has been arrested for a public order offence, a Kent Police spokesman said as officers issued a warning.
Superintendent Simon Thompson said: "Kent is not the only county seeing this trend and while some might find it funny, the act of frightening or threatening others may be enough to warrant criminal offences under the Public Order Act."