GAINESVILLE — Police in Gainesville have arrested three teens in connection to a Gainesville home burglary in which two of the suspects wore clown masks and the victim was shot in the face with a BB gun.
According to police, the teens ranged in age from 13 to 14 and were armed with BB guns that resembled "normal firearms" when they broke into a home Tuesday night in Gainesville. The homeowner told investigators she was asleep on her couch when she awoke to find the three teens inside her home.
"The victim said the three intruders spoke to each other in Spanish, but nothing was said to her," said Belva G. McClinton, a spokesperson with the department. "The intruders then shot the BB guns in the residence and one intruder turned his pistol at the victim and shot her in the face causing an injury to her nose and arm."
The teens were charged with burglary of a habitation.
In a statement released Thursday, authorities say the suspects' decision to wear the masks coincidentally coincided as a rash of clown sightings were reported across North Texas and the nation. However, they warned residents to take caution when choosing their Halloween costumes.
"We would like to take this opportunity to address the use of the clown costumes as we approach Halloween," McClinton said. "While it is not illegal to wear a clown costume, we would ask that members of our community take into consideration recent events locally and nationally as they select costumes for the Halloween festivities."