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Local clown shares insights about current “scary clown” epidemic

By Jefferson Tyler, Multimedia Journalist

OTTUMWA, IA (KYOU) – Kirksville Police says they’ve gotten calls of scary clowns in the area. They’ve investigated the claims, but have not been able to confirm the reports. But still, it does have people talking, especially people who make a living bring joy to kids as clowns. KYOU Fox News reporter Jefferson Tyler spoke with a local performer who says the issue of scary looking clowns popping up all over the country, is serious business.

For Dizzy the Clown, being a clown is all about injecting fun and happiness into kids’ lives.

“To see kids smile is a great thing. Because you have no idea what kind of lives they live. There are clowns out there that are visiting kids in hospitals, kids who have cancer. There are clowns out there going into schools and teaching kids about character and bully prevention,” said Dizzy the Clown.

Recently rumors have been circulating that would wipe the smile off her face, if it wasn’t painted on.

“To know that people are dressing up as clowns and scaring kids. Or luring kids into the woods. Or anywhere. That is so wrong. And personally I think people have to have a screw loose to be doing something like that,” said Dizzy.

For Desi Payne who performs as Dizzy the clown, it’s serious business. She graduated from Clown College and attends dozens of classes a year, to keep up with the latest trends.

“They teach you magic, balloons, face painting. They teach you how to do skits. They teach you how to perform with excellence,” said Dizzy.

It wasn’t until she saw first saw a clown up close, working as an administrator in the hospital. That inspired her to be who she is today.

“He would bring joy and happiness to people that were sick in the hospital. And when I saw that. I said that is really cool. And so I just thought, you know I would like to do that,” said Dizzy.

After 20 years on the job, the thought that people use the profession she loves to scare people is not a laughing matter.

“When people go out and do that. They are giving good clowns a bad name. They are not real clowns,” said Dizzy.

If you see someone dressed up as a clown, or anyone who is going around scaring people or acting strangely. Don’t be afraid to contact local law enforcement to make sure it’s a safe situation.


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