At 5:41 pm today, the City’s Emergency Communications Center received a call reporting an attempted abduction of a toddler in Jim Barnett Park. Five Winchester Police Department units were dispatched and at 5:42 pm, the first officer arrived on scene and began establishing a perimeter. The caller stated that a man or multiple people dressed as clowns near a wooded area of the park tried to abduct the little girl who was in the park with her sister. Twelve officers were on the scene and conducted a search for the suspect, but did not find anyone matching the description. After questioning, officers determined that a man, wearing all red, knelt down to talk to the girl, which scared her and she screamed. The man did not touch the girl. She was unharmed and there is no evidence that an attempted abduction was taking place.
There are no cases of people being harmed in Jim Barnett Park, no confirmed clown sightings and no indication there is any risk to public safety.