SPOKANE, Wash. -

Police around the country say people are in a heightened state; worried about creepy clowns wreaking havoc.

However, they also want to remind you just because you see a clown, does not mean anything malicious is happening.

When you hear about clowns in Spokane, images from the horror film, “It” may come to mind.

But police say there is no need to worry: "It" isn't hanging around town.

The hysteria started over the weekend, with a Facebook post that claimed a man dressed as a clown chased a young girl around 44th and Bowdish.

“This is normally a very quiet neighborhood,” said Jerald Boger, a resident of the neighborhood. “We normally don't have incidents like clowns running through the neighborhood.”

The Spokane County Sheriff's Office says it looked into those claims, and found that no criminal activity occurred.

Around the country stories of creepy clowns scaring their communities are abundant.

Many may think it is all in good fun, but there is a group that is being hurt by these stories.

“It's affecting me and my work. I don't condone it, and I don't think it's funny. I don't think the victims of the real incidents think it's funny. And I think it just needs to stop,” said Mandy Varner.

Varner works as a professional clown and performer. She says the stigma surrounding clowns could end up hurting their business. 

Really the only way we can combat it is just going out and being the fun happy characters that we want to be when we're out interacting with the public,” Varner said.

Even Stephen King, who wrote about a homicidal clown, weighed in on the issue.

"Hey guys, time to cool the clown hysteria-- most of em are good, cheer up the kiddies, make people laugh," he tweeted.

Police are also reminding the public that just because someone is dressed as a clown, doesn't mean they are committing a crime.

Keep it fun, keep it lighthearted. Be appropriate with it and then you'll have zero contact with us,” said Shane Phillips of the Spokane Police Department.

Police also say there is a point when the "creepy clown" joke goes much too far.

In Shoshone County, several people reported being harassed online by someone dressed as a clown.

That investigation is ongoing, but police say anyone involved in this kind of activity could find themselves facing a number of criminal charges.