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Jefferson County Public Schools alert parents to unfounded clown threats

Parents in Mesa County received a similar letter
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Posted at 10:54 AM, Sep 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-30 12:54:59-04

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. -- A creepy clown phenomenon has permeated the Colorado school system, prompting letters to parents in Jefferson County Friday. 

Jefferson County Public School officials said Friday morning they have heard about a host of rumors about threats and violence. 

"Specifically, we've had numerous reports at several schools about 'clowns coming to shoot up the school,'" Dan McMinimee, the Jefferson County Public Schools Superintendent, said. 

But like many rumors, McMinimee said the threats are not credible. 

"We immediately investigate threat rumors and involve local law enforcement," McMinimee said. "Safety and security are a priority to Jeffco Public Schools." 

School officials are citing social media hysteria, spurred by coverage and the viral nature of the fake clown posts.

Denver7 recently debunked one viral Facebook post by a Colorado website, lending credence to McMinimee's statement. 

Jefferson County Public School officials are asking parents to speak with their students about the importance of safety, but guarding against believing and sharing unfounded rumors. 

The threats in Jefferson County are being heard across the state of Colorado. On Friday morning, parents in Mesa County also received notification following a specific Facebook threat by an entity known as "Clowny Headsmasher" threatening violence. 

Police have investigated, and the district there said they found no specific threat to local students. 

Much like in Jefferson County, school officials are asking for students and parents to communicate well and use good judgment as threats become more common. 

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