Due to the Halloween season and national reports of clowns, Marion Police Chief Tyler Mermis said more officers will be out patrolling Marion on Halloween, and will be on the lookout for suspicious activity.
“We’ve had a couple reports of some (clowns) in town,” Mermis said. “Someone sent me a picture the other day, but they said that when they went back to see if that was really what they saw, they were gone.”
Mermis said his guess was that it was kids messing around.
“That was a couple weeks ago,” Mermis said. “Hopefully the whole craze of that is gone by now because you don’t hear too much of it across the nation like it was a couple weeks ago.”
Although clowns have been popping up in the news, Mermis said people are ok to dress up in the costumes, as long as they are following the law.
“If somebody is acting a fool with one on, we’ll address it with that person,” Mermis said. “That’s what we can do. If somebody is acting in a criminal way, there are things we could do lawfully such as an arrest or writing a report up. Hopefully it doesn’t get out of control.”
Hillsboro Police Chief Dan Kinning and Peabody Police Chief Bruce Burke said both departments would also be on the lookout for suspicious behavior.
“We’re looking at (the clowns) and looking into it at this time,” Burke said. “We will take extra precautions.”
Burke also said Peabody police would participate in Peabody’s Trunk or Treat event, where they will have “high visibility downtown.”
Sheriff Rob Craft said deputies would help with surrounding communities to make sure people stay safe.
“We try to monitor the outlying communities and spend as much time as we can watching the kids and the traffic,” Craft said.
Since Halloween falls on a weekday, Kinning hopes for a more subdued holiday.
“Since we started the Trick or Treat Main Street event, it’s been a lot quieter,” Kinning said. “Hopefully this year will be nice and quiet.”