Creepy clown craze claims new victim: Ronald McDonald - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Creepy clown craze claims new victim: Ronald McDonald

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(NBC) -

by JUAN ANGUIANO and CORKY SIEMASZKO

Mayor McCheese is keeping Ronald McDonald under wraps.

With the nation thoroughly spooked by both real and fake sightings of "creepy" clowns, McDonald's has decided to limit the public appearances of their signature red-haired, floppy-shoed figurehead, the fast-food giant revealed Tuesday.

"McDonald's and franchisees in the local markets are mindful of the current climate around clown sightings in communities and as such are being thoughtful in respect to Ronald McDonald's participation in community events for the time being," spokeswoman Terri Hickey said in an emailed statement.

The move comes amid a spate of sinister clown sightings that have freaked out Americans coast-to-coast and hit real clowns in the wallet.

Americans are about as divided about clowns as they are about politics (coincidence?).

The Rasmussen polling firm reported in 2014 that 43 percent of Americans "don't like" clowns. And last year, the annual Chapman University Survey of American Fears found that clowns were a cause of significant anxiety for 6.8 percent of Americans.

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