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Some things are just too bizarre to be believed—and this incident involving a clown mask is one of them. An Ohio father decided that a new method of punishment, involving chasing his daughter through the street wearing a clown mask, was a great idea until a neighbor fired a shot.

Vernon Barrett Jr. thought that punishing his 6-year-old daughter by chasing her at full speed while donning a clown mask would teach her a lesson and correct her behavior. However, he didn’t count on a neighbor firing a shot, that didn’t harm anyone, or facing criminal charges as a result.

The Root has the full police account of what happened:

According to the report, Vernon Barrett Jr. put on the mask and started to chase his young daughter from their apartment and outside of their house. A woman reported to the police that the child—who was being chased by a masked man—ran in front of her car screaming before jumping into her car.

The terrified 6-year-old then exited the vehicle and ran into someone else’s apartment in an attempt to get away. When the child got to that apartment, she begged the family to let her stay as there was a clown chasing her.

Dion Santiago, one of the people living in the apartment, told the police that when he looked out of his window, he saw the man—now identified as Barrett, still wearing the mask and standing outside of the building. And so, Santiago took his gun and fired it toward the yard of the building next door to scare off the would-be attacker.

The little girl was so terrified, that even after officers revealed to her that the clown was actually her father, she continued to hide. When police questioned Barrett about why he did this he told them about the little girl acting out in school and being afraid to physically discipline her because of her mother physically abusing her in the past.

Well, the police decided that Barrett’s parenting method went entirely too far and charged him with child endangerment and inducing panic. There are literally no words for this one, surely there was another way to discipline your child other than scaring them to death while running through the street with a clown mask on. That’s 2017 for you.


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Father Punishes Daughter By Chasing Her Wearing A Clown Mask, Neighbor Fires Shot  was originally published on