RENFREWSHIRE police have warned that action may be taken against people who carry out acts as part of the so-called "killer clown" craze.

This comes following reports of clown sightings in the Erskine area which have left residents "terrified".

One youngster was left "hysterical" after spotting a youth in a costume near Park Glade.

Another man claims that he drove past a group of four clowns who were seen chasing cars near St Anne's Primary School.

The clown craze that originated in the US involves people dressing up as clowns and trying to scare or intimidate members of the public walking in the street.

Police have warned that action may be taken against people who take carry out acts as part of the so-called "killer clown" craze.

Members of the Erskine, Inchinnan and Bishopton Community Facebook page have since posted about their sightings in the area. 

Laura Aitken from the group claims to have seen a youth dressed up as a clown at the bus stop near Park Glade, which terrified her young daughter.

She said: "Thanks to the little sh*t dressed as a clown joining the latest ridiculous craze and standing at the bus stop at the top of park glade, I now have an absolutely hysterical nine-year-old who I know is going to have nightmares for weeks thanks to you.

"I turned round in the car and confronted him he removed the mask and there was this young lad about 12 to 13 thinking this was a laugh. Thanks for the upset you have caused tonight.

"She was absolutely hysterical in the car but I had to drive back to confront him to show her it wasn't real."

Mark Johnstone added: "The clowns have hit Erskine... There is four of them down at the road by St Anne's and one of them was chasing cars going by.

"I had to do a double look, I couldn't believe it.

"It is probably just kids up to no good.

"I hate clowns so I wasn't stopping."

The craze is thought to have been inspired by a number of clown-related pranks in America and has seen incidents reported across the UK recently.

Last week a hoaxer admitted a "sighting" in Glasgow was faked.

A Facebook page called "Killer Clowns in and around Glasgow" said a clown had been spotted underneath a bridge.

The post was shared more than 1,000 times before the poster admitted the picture had been taken elsewhere.

Although many reports do not specifically involve threats or violence, police said anyone "seeking to cause distress and potential harm to anyone" should be aware that action would be taken.

Inspector Cassie Glass said: "There have been reports of individuals dressed as clowns in some parts of Scotland.

"Reports which have been made to local police officers are being investigated and do not specifically involve threats or violence.

"However, any person seeking to cause distress and potential harm to anyone should be aware that police will take action.

“We will take action against people dressed as clowns if they are causing fear and alarm.

“It can be quite scary for people though, particularly during darkness.

"If anyone has any concerns they should report the matter to police."