The video of a prankster who was supposedly headbutted by his victim has recently gone viral. According to media reports, Ashley Symes, 23, who was dressed up as a clown and armed with a baseball bat was left with a bloody nose after he tried to scare a man in a car park in Chatham, Kent. However, it seems that the whole ordeal was staged and his so-called victims were, in fact, his friends.

Ashley explains on social media that he conducted the video as a social experiment to see how people would react to negative content. And it seems that the video did exactly that as it has received over 8,000 views on Youtube in just a few days.

On his Facebook page, he claimed: “The police knew about it all and nothing has come of it because it isn't real. So no I wasn't arrested or whatever else is speculating I was actually working with them.” Ashley has since apologized to anybody who thought that the prank was real.

When it goes horribly wrong

But not all “killer clown” pranks achieve their desired results without causing acommotion. Last Saturday evening, at Brunel University, Uxbridge, a “killer clown” caused panic on the campus as he chased students with a real chainsaw. It was later discovered that the frightening scenes were acted by a Youtube prankster known as Kenny, and his friends. The 19-year-old media studies student apologized for his stunt by explaining to the media that it was “purely for entertainment purposes”.

Despite the promotional ideas of some pranksters, police have given strict warnings about the consequences of taking part in this craze. Superintendent Simon Thompson of Kent Police said: “There is an emerging trend, particularly on social media, of people dressing up as clowns and in some instances taking the opportunity to scare and intimidate other people.” He added: “The act of frightening or threatening others may be enough to warrant criminal offences under the Public Order Act.”

Of course, these copycat acts are not based in London or its surrounding areas alone.

Last week, Thames Valley Police, Gloucestershire Police and South Wales Police, all reported numerous incidents of clowns intimidating people. Although nobody was harmed, police have increased the number of patrols in an attempt to prevent further acts.

Don't miss our page on Facebook!