Police in the US state of Georgia say they have received calls from anxious parents about clowns trying to talk to children.
LaGrange officers are also investigating an online threat to abduct youngsters from local schools.
Lt Dale Strickland told WXIA-TV that someone started a Facebook page saying they would dress like a clown and drive a white van to five local schools.
Once there they would grab pupils and drive off with them, the page claimed.
Lt Strickland said police are working to track down whoever made the post, which has now been taken down.
In a statement on Facebook, LaGrange police said: “We’ve received several calls about clowns in a van and in wooded areas trying to talk to children.
“This behaviour is not cute or funny.
“Understand that if officers see this behaviour, you’re going to have a conversation with them. And, if applicable, you may face criminal charges.”
The LaGrange kidnap threat is the latest in a series of incidents involving clowns across the country.
In August, an apartment complex in Greenville, South Carolina sent letters to residents warning them about a clown trying to lure children into the woods.
In September, residents of Winston-Salem in North Carolina said a clown was offering children sweets to go off with him.
Witnesses said the clown, who was dressed in white overalls and had red, bushy hair and a red nose, ran off when officers arrived.
Earlier this week in Dublin, Georgia, a car driver said he had swerved to avoid a clown in the road before crashing his vehicle.