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(NEWSER) – For the past week or so, authorities in California's Central Valley have been fielding calls about clowns supposedly terrorizing locals. On Wednesday, a clown with orange hair was supposedly chasing people with a club, for example, but when sheriff's deputies responded, there was no evidence of a clown or of any victims.

Now the Kern County sheriff's office says they think the calls are Halloween pranks—inspired by the "Wasco Clown," a person dressed as a clown, holding balloons, and standing in various locations throughout the San Joaquin Valley town of Wasco in pictures posted on a creepy Instagram account. The "Wasco Clown" soared to prominence after being written about on LA blogs and newspapersSlate, and even the Daily Mail, the Bakersfield Californian reports. 

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