The fear of clowns is called Coulrophobia and it’s quite common. What happened this week at Auburn University might seem like another classic case of campus hysteria, but there is apparently some real cause for concern.

WKRG News reported recently that creepy clowns on social media issued threats and caused a lock down at two grade schools in Alabama.

Here’s a video report:

Police were summoned to Auburn U. when it was reported that clowns had been seen on campus.

AL.com reported:

Police called after clowns spotted at Auburn University

Auburn University Public Safety and Auburn police received reports Monday evening of clowns on campus.

Auburn police Assistant Chief Will Mathews said Auburn police received several calls Monday night and only one report.

A woman reported seeing two to three people wearing clown masks while walking across campus, he said.

Officers immediately responded and didn’t see anyone dressed as a clown, Mathews said.

“There are a lot of cameras around where this was reported and no one was able to see anything,” he said. “There was no ominous lurking threat that we know about.”

Authorities were also alerted to several social media posts that suggested clowns were roaming the university campus.

It’s unclear if the group wearing clown masks was intending to cause mischief or not, but it likely attracted attention due to recent online threats from alleged clowns.

Mathews asks residents and students to be conscious of their surroundings and to consider avoiding doing anything that could cause alarm, including wearing clown costumes for the time being.

Auburn’s student newspaper The Plainsman published an official safety notice:

‘Clown sightings’ reported on campus

The Auburn Police Division has received reports of people dressed in clown costumes on campus, according to an Auburn University Public Safety notice…

The notice in full:

On Monday evening the university and Auburn Police Division received a few reports of people dressed in clown costumes on campus. There were also several social media posts that suggested the same. We have seen similar reports of clown sightings at other universities and towns across the State of Alabama and the Southeast.

Auburn Police officers were on patrol and immediately responded to the areas reported but were unable to locate anyone. Auburn Police will continue to patrol our campus and investigate any suspicious activity. We are not aware of any danger or threat to our campus community.

We also had a report of students walking around looking for people dressed as clowns. For your safety, we strongly encourage you to leave this job to Auburn Police. Please use good judgment and avoid wearing clown masks, as it could be perceived as a hazard or threat to others.

We urge our campus community to be vigilant and always report anything suspicious by dialing 911. If you have information or questions, you can call the Auburn Police Division’s non-emergency number at 334-501-3100.

Another resource that is available to students is the free Rave Guardian app. Features of this app include the ability to send tips and photos to Auburn Police or set a safety timer to allow friends and family to help look out for your safety.

What would Krusty say?

Featured image via YouTube.