The new film adaptation of Stephen King's It is released on Friday.
It's released a year after the "killer clowns" trend terrified neighbourhoods in America and the UK, and in the run-up to Halloween. Timely.
Here's the teaser trailer:
The form of Pennywise, the sewer-dwelling clown and his red balloon, is terrifying to many for obvious reasons.
The Lilitz Borough Police Department in Pennsylvania recently posted some photos of drains with balloons on them, which has scared people in the neighbourhood.
Lawrence Police also tweeted about it:
WE DID THE CLOWN THING LAST YEAR WE AREN'T DOING THIS AGAIN https://t.co/XZVLHFXIi2— Lawrence Police (@Lawrence Police) 1504706390
This prank also seemed suspiciously timely, for the films release. Some speculated it was an advertising campaign.
The story quickly went viral, and the culprits behind the act were found to be five teen girls, who acknowledged the post on both Twitter and Facebook.
We tried to trick our friends but ended up scaring America! #redballoonlititz 🎈 https://t.co/hbLSCxv6GV— Peyton Reiff (@Peyton Reiff) 1504655038
A status read:
On the last night of summer my friends and I were driving at night when I spotted a dim lit sewer drain and I stopped the car and told the girls I have an idea. I explained what I wanted to do and all the girls agreed it was a great idea. So we quickly drove to giant to start our scheme.
When we arrived at giant we asked them to blow up 24 red balloons.
We then shoved these balloons into my friends small car and drove away.
Our plan was to tie red balloons to sewer drains around our piers from school houses to geek them out since the new IT movie is coming out this Friday and we knew kids from our school would know about this!
We ended up going back to giant and getting 10 more red balloons and tying them all over town.
When we woke up we saw the Lititz Police had responded to the balloons and were frightened which wasn't our intent but we are glad to see they understood what it meant and got a good laugh out of it!
Don't worry no clowns here in Lititz just 5 teenage girls having fun!
The high school juniors and seniors said they owned up to the prank and the cops are planning on meeting them for a "funny follow up".