The proliferation of "creepy clown" reports around the United States has prompted the Binghamton police chief to issue an unusual statement.

Bob Joseph/WNBF News [file][/caption]The city police Detective Bureau put out a news release late Monday afternoon as parents and school officials expressed concern about online stories concerning people dressed as clowns. The statement was from Chief Joseph Zikuski:

“Due to recent media reports of so-called “clown activity,” parents and residents in the City of Binghamton should know the following:

Law enforcement agencies in Upstate New York and in nearly a dozen U.S. states have received reports of unusual activity involving individuals dressed as clowns. While some of these reports are confirmed, most are believed to be a hoax. The number of reported clown sightings and social media discussion appears to be gaining popularity as a practical joke. With Halloween approaching, it is likely this trend will continue through October.

As always, residents should contact the Binghamton Police Department with information on any suspicious activity, 24/7, at (607) 772-7076.”

Binghamton City School District interim superintendent Tonia Thompson also issued a statement encouraging parents to speak with their children about the "clown" hoaxes.

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