Police have issued a fresh warning about the ‘killer clown’ craze as video emerged of one trying to scare a late-night reveller - armed with a hammer.
Officers warned they were not seeing the funny side after responding to six alerts in the space of one evening in a single county.
In Plymouth, Devon student George Birkbeck, 22, bravely faced down one of the sinister pranksters who was wielding a hammer.
He found himself confronted by the clown - in full costume - around 10pm on Friday and shared the encounter on Facebook.
George said the clown refused to move out of his way so he chased him off with a beer bottle out of a crate he had just bought from Tesco.
He said: “I was walking home from Tesco after getting myself a crate of beer when I was confronted by a clown.
“He stood in my way and wouldn’t let me pass and had what looked like a hammer in hand.
“I decided to film this in case it was my last moments on earth and even in death it would be a joke as I got killed by a clown.
“Seriously - stay safe out there guys these things are scary and I don’t recommend that anyone else charges towards them if you see one.
“I had a rush of blood and got lucky that this one was more of a pussy than I am.”
Police said there were multiple reports of people dressed as clowns across Plymouth on Thursday - with one confirmed report on a school bus.
Children reported being chased through Plymouth woods by clowns carrying knives, or approached in the street.
Others said clowns had been at their school, prompting an emergency response.
Police said those responsible would be prosecuted if caught.
In Gloucestershire police said they dealt with six reports of creepy clowns armed with knives acting suspiciously in the county on Friday evening.
They were said to be following people, and one one occasion a child was targeted.
Officers say the incidents not only caused real alarm but also tied up resources which could be better deployed elsewhere.
A Gloucestershire police spokesman said: “The reports have been made in the Gloucester area and have mostly involved clowns carrying knives.
“In one case a child was followed.
“Clearly this has scared people and caused real distress.
“We have attended these incidents as grade 1 emergencies and that limits our ability to attend to other incidents.
“We haven’t traced anyone involved as yet as they have disappeared by the time we arrive but anyone we do find will be dealt with appropriately.”
They added: “Whether those involved are doing it for a joke or not this is no laughing matter.
“These are stupid acts that are really frightening people and wasting our time. Please don’t be tempted to do it. Think of the consequences.”
The Killer Clown craze which started in America sees people in evil clown costumes stalking the streets trying to frighten young people.
The chilling clown craze has now exploded across Britain, including several reports in Milton Keynes.