Find Out Why This Babysitter Called The Police While The Kids Were Asleep
We all have seen our shares of chain letters where if you do not pass it on, bad luck will happen to you. These emails usually begin with “Think carefully before deleting this email, or else…”. The threat is enough to make us cringe and a tad afraid, too. But often, we send them directly to the trash bin. Others have joked that perhaps, the reason why none of us had been lucky so far with finding a soulmate or winning in our investments is because of all those broken chain letters years ago. We know they are not true, however. But there are some chain letters that creep us out because they are all too realistic. They can become a possibility for any regular person.
What we are about to share is a story that has been circulating as a chain letter since about 2004. There have been many variations of the tale evoking deep feelings from the readers. As we share the story of a teenage babysitter and her ward, take a look at your own circumstances and reflect on what you could do differently.
We do not know much about the parents, except that they are hardworking. In one version, the parents wanted to go on vacation. This is normal. After all, working so hard from 9 to 5 can be exhausting, and going on a road trip and forgetting about bills and mortgages for a while can help with mental and physical health. So one day, the parents decided to take a break, and so they looked for a baby sitter to take care of their two kids. They probably went online to look at various babysitting agencies and hired from there. They could also have gone with recommendations from a friend. We know that they did diligent research to make sure that they found a suitable sitter.
Let us name her Jane. She is unnamed in the chain letters, but it is good to put a name to such an essential character in the story. Jane was contacted by the parents of the children and was asked for a short-notice duty. She had a date that night with Brandon, so he had to call him and cancel the date. Maybe next time as duty calls, she thought. And besides, she would be paid handsomely, which can go towards paying off her student loans. Jane had been struggling to find a more stable job, but babysitting for friends and even other families have proven to be a profitable job for the young adult. Besides, she cannot be too sensitive about the job she takes in, as long as they are decent and do not harm other people.
Jane Agrees To Babysit
So she agreed to babysit for the parents, but because it was short notice, she asked for a 20% bonus, and she can take care of them for the two days when the parents would be out. “The money is not a problem,” said the father. We will send it to your bank in five minutes. Jane thought it was a good deal as she would easily earn more than $1,100. That is about half the month’s rent for two days of work. She thanked the parents and said she would fill up the gas and then drive straight away to their residence. The parents informed her that they had already gone out, but the keys are under the rug on the front porch.
The Drive To The Residence
After dressing up and preparing her bag of clothes for two days, Jane is ready to drive to the residence. It is not mentioned where the house is, but it is most likely an isolated house at the very end of a long road. It would probably be about at least 11 miles from the nearest police station, jail, grocery store, or restaurant. The babysitter anticipated that there would be no more food for her when she arrives at the house, so she used her credit card to purchase a bag of chips and a cheap meal off of the shelves of 7Eleven. She ate quickly and went on to drive the remaining leg of the journey towards the secluded mansion. Jane has been in the area several times, babysitting for the other families, so there was no hint of concern at all in her mind.
She arrives at the house, steps on the front porch, and instantly finds the key to the house. The parents could have done a better job of hiding the key, though, she thought. The key was barely covered, so it was easy for her to spot it. She opens the front door and then proceeds to the second floor to check the kids and put her things in the guest room. The kids were already asleep. She heard from fellow sitters who had been hired by this household that these two kids, Tammy and Sam, we adorable. “Well, they are asleep. Let me check the kitchen if there is anything to eat,” Jane said. As she suspected, there was nothing already prepared. But the drive burned all the calories she ate earlier, so with a great degree of effort, she cooked some pasta.
Back To The Parents
Some of these details were no longer mentioned in the story, but these could have very well been true. By this time, the parents were already on the first leg of their two-day vacation. They both felt that they deserved some alone time after working so hard continuously for the last three months. They were setting up a moving company, and so the past months had been grueling, traveling from one place to another, and meeting with key people of the business. They felt guilty that they could not take the kids on this vacation, but they promised them that next time – if there were a next time – the whole family would go to Disneyland. But what if something happens to the parents or the kids in the interim?
Watching TV Upstairs
The babysitter decides to watch TV upstairs. She popped open the bag of chips she purchased earlier and then starting eating. It looks like Sleepy Hollow is on tonight. This is not the first time Jane has seen the movie, so the twists and turns and surprise moves are no longer new to her. She looks for another channel and settles for another show on HBO. She decides to call Brandon at home and see how he is doing. Brandon had already eaten dinner and is watching a sports show. Her boyfriend has always loved sports, and she knew better than to disturb him when he is watching a sports channel. To his credit, Brandon has been a very loving boyfriend to Jane.
While Jane was enjoying some shows on TV, the kids were fast asleep. Their parents tucked them in early for the night after eating a light meal of meatballs and pizza. The two wanted to drink soda, but the parents were quick to say no, knowing the harmful effects of having too much sugar in the body. The kids understood, but their cravings were unsatisfied. Tammy, the girl, wants to be a lawyer when she grows up. She has always been vocal about this to her parents. Sometimes, Sam would try to annoy her by calling her “Your Honor,” which is for a judge, she clarified. Still, Sam persisted as he wanted to annoy her little sister. Their parents would usually reprimand the older brother and give him time-out by facing the wall.
She Heard a Noise
While watching TV, Jane heard a noise downstairs. It sounded like someone was putting the key into the doorknob. She knows that the house has an excellent home security system, so she was at ease that no one could break in without her knowing and alarming the whole house. But to be sure, she went down to check – there was nothing. She checked to see if anything looked suspicious, and she did not see anything. It was probably because of the horror movies she had been watching. She decided to go back upstairs and check on the kids. The stairs gave a rather freaky creaking sound, which made Jane jump a bit. She thought, “I should not have watched all those shows. Now, look at me, imagining things and hearing sounds that are not there!”.
The Kids Are Fine
When she checked each bedroom, the kids appeared to be okay. They are sleeping soundly. It was just 9 pm, and the night was still young. She felt bored, though. Sam had the latest gadgets, so she thought she could borrow them while he was sound asleep. She spotted an MP3 player on the nightstand, and so she decided to take it and listen to music in the living room downstairs. Jane thought of returning the MP3 in the morning as she wanted to enjoy the device more since she did not have one of these. She felt that it was too extravagant when she could just listen to music on the radio. She also did not want to resort to personal loans to buy any item she deemed as a want.
Listening To Music
She put on the headphones and began listening to music. For a young boy, Sam is into female singers. There is nothing wrong with that, of course. His playlist was full of songs by Gwen Stefani, Aaliyah, Celine Dion, and even Mariah Carey. Jane thought she could do a Mariah, but then she felt disturbed by the incident earlier. What was the noise all about? There was no dog or cat in the house. The only possible explanation she could think of was the wind. Yes, it was probably the wind. She was confident that the home security alarm system would have gone off if someone was trying to get inside. Meanwhile, unbeknownst to Jane, a danger was already lurking inside the house.
The parents have now checked in at Wyndham, hoping to enjoy their day. They were drinking a bottle of wine at a fine dining restaurant and had ordered steak, too. The father took out his credit card and paid the check after a sumptuous dinner. They got an Uber and headed to the hotel, hoping to retire to a quiet night. They were not aware that their house now hosts danger. The two were at least five hundred miles away from home, and it would take them at least four hours to go back, should anything happen. It was good, however, that they left the phone number of the hotel to Jane so that if anything happens, they can be reached quickly. The bellboy welcomed them to the hotel with a smile.
The county where the incident happened was one for the more affluent members of the society. They have the best insurance providers and the best banks. They also have an excellent justice and police system that keeps the peace. The county has not had any significant incidents of crime or anything similar. They are able to keep the good members of society in check and the criminals in jail. Little do they know that they would be surprised by the biggest and most surprising news they will hear in the next few years. Most of the residents are already asleep or are about to sleep. Even the police officers are dozing off a bit at their stations. Those on roving duty are taking a light snack for the evening.
Inspecting The House
Jane, still disturbed, decided to go around the house once more, with lights on, to inspect every nook and cranny. She saw nothing suspicious in the living room downstairs, the dining room, nor the laundry room. When she went up to Sam’s room, she did not notice anything strange either. None creeped her out either at Tammy’s room. She went to the guest room, where she would be sleeping, to see if anything was amiss. She did not notice anything wrong. Apart from the clown statue that was in the corner, everything looked good. She drew a breath of relief. She will have to cover the statue with something later on as she is eternally afraid of clowns, though. She patted and gave herself credit for being brave.
The father remembered that he forgot to give Jane their cell phone number. She does have the hotel number, but it would be best if she also had their cell phone number. He then told his wife that he would call Jane in a bit to give her his personal number. The wife nodded. She was busy watching TV. It appeared that there was a jail breakout from a nearby county, and the police are trying to round up the escapees. He then asked for the channel to be changed. He briefly watched a commercial on roof repair before the baseball game appeared on TV. The wife would usually protest when this happens, but she held in her temper to a degree so that she would not ruin the vacation.
Jane has difficulty sleeping, so she decided to do something that relaxes her mind. She liked sharpening knives when she finds it hard to sleep. So she went downstairs and then found a knife and began sharpening it with a whetstone. She noticed, however, that the faucet was leaking a bit. “I’ll remind them to contact plumbing services,” Jane said. She was feeling better now, but not in any way sleepy. It is as if something was preventing her from sleeping. She then sat in front of the downstairs living room and watched TV. The weatherman said the weather would be sunny tomorrow. Well, and good. She could start with early jogging. The trail near is suitable for joggers and early risers.
The Phone Call
The husband then decides to make a phone call and ask Jane to take note of their personal cell number. Jane was downstairs at that time. She jolted at the sound of the house phone ringing. She really was becoming edgy during those moments. Jane picked up the phone and then was quite happy to hear the voice of the father on the other end. “Hi Jane, I just wanted you to have our cell number in case you have to reach us outside the hotel,” the father said. Jane grabbed her cellphone and took note of the number given by the father. She then updated the parents on the status of the children, saying there were fast asleep and that there was nothing to worry about. She secretly gave herself credit for being a good babysitter. The father thanked Jane and was about to hang up.
I Want To Sleep
Jane then said, “Is it alright if I cover the clown statue with a blanket or something? I have this mild fear of clowns, and I am not able to sleep because of it. I can remove the cover in the morning.” There was a long silence on the other end. “We do not have a clown statue.” Fear started to grip Jane, and she was motionless. She then hears the firm voice of the father. “Wake the children up quietly; activate the home security system’s alarm. Get to the nearest neighbor, and we will call the police.” Jane did not know what to do next. She was crippled and visibly perspiring upon realizing they were in danger. She was right about hating and fearing clowns.
The Clown Statue
The stranger entered the house early in the day, even before Jane got there. He used the keys under the rag, just as Jane did. He was, however, in a hurry, so he was not able to put it back to its original spot, leading Jane to notice it was poorly positioned when she entered the house earlier. He was trying to hide from the police and ended up in the somewhat isolated mansion. But where did the stranger get the clown costume? He found it in the trash bin somewhere. He could not settle where to hide, so he had been shifting from one room to another, until the sounds he had been making caught Jane’s ears. He should have been a degree more careful.
Jane Wakes The Children Up
Jane went up to Sam’s room, wakes him up, and then asks him to silently proceed to the living room and wait for her and Tammy there. She told him the situation is serious and that he needs to stay absolutely quiet while walking down the stairs. Sam obliged. Now, the problem was waking up Tammy without alerting the clown statue who was inside her room. She thought of using another tactic this time. Jane went to Tammy’s room, flicked the lights on, and then said in a raised voice, “Hey Tammy, your mom wants to talk to you on the phone downstairs.” “Wake up!” Tammy was awakened and walked with Jane downstairs. The statue was still there. Jane grabbed her purse with her credit cards on the way down.
They Are Safe
The three were able to go to the nearest neighbor successfully. Not an easy feat as they had to walk a good mile to reach the nearest one. Jane informed the neighbor of what happened and that the parents had already called the police. Jane tried contacting them through their phone but could only get a busy tone. Perhaps there were still talking to the police. The neighbor volunteered to call 911 as well. The police said they were on their way and that they will also be going to the neighbor. He had a couple of roof repair personnel coming out tomorrow, but it looks like that needs to be postponed, seeing as there might be an investigation tomorrow both here and at the scene.
Parents Driving Home
Upon calling the police, the parents went to their car, stepped on the gas, and tried their best to get to their children as fast as possible. They were worried, sick, and the wife was uncontrollably crying. The father, who was driving, could also not hide his fear for the life of his children. The police had assured them they will be coming over to the house as quickly as they can, but it did nothing to assuage them of their fears. The four-hour drive felt like an eternity to them, and they did not mind their stomachs that were already grumbling at that time. Stress does make one hungry. They would have to drop by the neighbor’s house and make sure Sam and Tammy were unharmed.
Reunion With The Kids
The father and the mother immediately hugged their two kids upon seeing them. The two did not have a full picture of what was happening, and they were visibly confused. They felt electricity run through their bodies as they hugged the kids after being afraid during the trip home. The mother was thinking that she could not possibly forgive herself if anything happened to Tammy and Sam. The father was thinking he was such a bad father for not bringing the kids to their vacation and leaving them all alone and helpless. The guilt was overwhelming for the two of them that they cried. They sobbed all the way to the neighbor’s house. They were greeted by cups of hot chocolate and cookies, which made them feel a bit better.
Staying At The Neighbors
While waiting for the police to catch the man, they stayed at the neighbor’s house, who were friendly enough to have sent them to a spare bedroom. They were also served coffee and a light snack, seeing they were flustered and could not really focus. The parents tried to remain calm and held on to their children. Jane was in one corner, trying to distract herself by looking for insurance companies. This situation made her think of getting more coverage for herself. Perhaps the danger she was in made herself think more of that. The neighbors stayed in the living room after telling them to feel at home. The parents were thankful that despite them being not so close, the neighbors were very accommodating and attended to their needs.
The Police Came
They can hear the police sirens nearing. The cops were now headed straight for the house. When the police reached the mansion, they surrounded the perimeter and asked the man to come out and surrender. He did not heed their call and attempted to flee instead. The police had a hard time looking for the clown man, but they were eventually able to find him. The man was catatonic when they saw him, and to a degree, he was afraid. Well, he was probably scared of being caught as he would be thrown to prison right away. The police officers immediately handcuffed him after reading him his rights. He was shoved inside the police mobile and brought to the police station.
He Was Dangerous
As it appeared, the man was a midget homicidal person who was able to escape the prison and was hiding from officers of the law. He was able to bypass the house’s home security system by using the key under the rug. While inside the house, he wore the costume and pretended to be a clown. Being small, he was not noticed right away and was seen only when Jane entered Tammy’s room. He was bent on doing harm to them but was outsmarted by Jane, who was able to bring the kids to safety. The man felt it was no longer safe for him to stay at the house and tried fleeing when he heard the sirens. He was, however, caught and brought to prison.
The Police Gave Them An Update
The police informed them that they were able to identify the suspect, who was a homicide suspect on the run. It was also said that he had schizophrenia and was in a catatonic state when they found him near the woods while trying to escape. It was also unclear whether he was trying to hurt the family or merely hiding. But one thing was sure, the kids and Jane were in immediate danger, and the degree of care they took by calling the police straight away saved them from any harm. Jane was glad that she and the kids were safe, so she thanked the police for the update. But the news still left her shaking and she just wanted to go home to her apartment right away.
The Story Does Not End
While this version ends for this family, this was not the only version that has been going around the web. In this version, the clown statue was a homicidal midget with a severe mental illness, who was seen in one of the kid’s rooms. In other versions, the children and the babysitter ended up being killed by the clown. Another story mentioned that the killer had been hiding in the house for a week and was never discovered. We would usually rely on our home security system to alert us about any intruders, so it is a scary thought that bad people can find ways to bypass or circumvent these systems and still gain entry. But what really happened in the story?
There Are Variations To The Story
In one of the many versions of the story, the clown can be seen sitting on the rocking chair, waiting with a sinister smile for the children. This would certainly be a scarier version, as the intent to harm the kids was apparent. It also means that the man was truly evil as he was waiting patiently for the children to be alone. He also has no intention of harming the parents but just the children, which points to a possible deep-seated psychological reason. He may have hatred towards kids who bullied him as a child. To a degree, we can sympathize with the plight of the criminal, but it does not justify what he was about to do to the children.
The Babysitter Was The Criminal
In other versions, when the babysitter entered the bedroom of the parents, it was hinted that the babysitter was the criminal. But in some versions, that is not the case. The babysitter was equally a victim of the situation. She was portrayed as a responsible person, yet afraid of clowns. That phone call did save their lives, and if she did not mention that she wanted to cover the clown statue, the police would not have been alerted. The three would likely end up deceased. Lawyers would certainly work on getting justice, but it would have been a sad ending still. The babysitter’s calm demeanor and quick actions were the reason why the kids were saved from certain harm.
More On The Babysitter
The babysitter was pitted against a homicidal criminal in these urban legends. The story is disturbing on many levels. For one, a teenage babysitter being at the front of a fight against an evil criminal is unfair. No one should have to face that danger anytime. In an ideal society, criminals should not really exist, and home security systems should not be needed if everyone followed the law. The kids being involved also points to a very serious problem. Most children are subjected to bullying and abuse during their younger years, which could have lasting effects when they become adults. If the kids were subjected to this kind of trauma, we could only guess what will happen to them as adults.
A Serious Mental Illness
On the other hand, the clown man could also be a victim of his circumstances. Most of those who abuse children either physically or sexually were victims themselves as a child. During those times, there was no easy way to come out as an abused person. It was difficult because the perpetrators are usually family members. No one would believe or give you credit for standing up for yourself then. But things have changed now, and our society is more open to people who were hurt. Programs to help children and women who were harmed are available nationwide and are readily accessible. But even then, abusers still get away with things. We can only hope for a better justice system.
Inspired By True Events
These urban legends may actually be inspired by events that happened in the 1970s and 1980s. One popular case was that of John Wayne Gacy. Reports say that in the 1970s, he caused the death of 33 young men and buried their bodies in his home in Chicago. It is gruesome, and the details are grisly. He was nicknamed the “killer clown” not because he crept up the houses of his victims disguised as a clown but because he was popular among the kids in the town as a party clown. We can only imagine the irony of someone making kids happy one day and then proceeding to do them harm the following day. But at least he was convicted and put to death for his crimes in 1994.
The Legend Lives On
But even after the death of John Wayne Gacy, the tale of the killer clown remains. It probably helped that while in prison, he painted “clown-themed artwork.” There was even a wave of phantom clown sightings in 1981. The origin of the sightings was in Boston and then later spread to ten other states. Loren Coleman documented these sightings in a book, Mysterious America. There were even reports of children being lured into vans by clowns. This incident then gave birth to another set of urban legend, claiming that white vans were circulating around metros to kidnap young children. Whether we should credit Gacy for these sightings or not is up for debate, but people being afraid of clowns certainly has valid reasons.Fear Of Clowns
Coulrophobia is the unofficial label for fear of clowns. Many say the fear is irrational, but as this article has shown, there is some valid basis for it. The fear can be debilitating. In the film It, the fear of the clown was showcased and validated. Stories like what we have seen here only amplify that fear of clowns. Of course, they are not scary per se, but because to a degree they had been associated with doing something terrible to children and even adults, the fear of these costumed characters had spread. We should not fear clowns, but we should also be careful of the many bad people out there. Parents should be especially protective of their children as they are the most vulnerable.Inspired By Movies
We have seen It. But the fear of clowns could have been inspired by an earlier movie, Poltergeist in 1982. In this movie, a scary clown doll terrorized two young children in their bedroom. This narrative is closer to the version depicted in the urban legend we just read. Demon clowns were also the driving plot behind the 1988 movie Killer Clowns from Outer Space. During the 1980s, information flowed from the media to the people and then spread rapidly among the people. Social media, as we know it now, did not exist yet, so there was no way to check or validate the information. This could be given credit for the unhampered spread of the various urban legends we now know.Children Do Not Like Clowns
In general, informal studies have shown that children do not like clowns. They hate it when they are put as decors in hospitals. Most kids see clowns as menacing. There was once a controversy involving a strip mall named the General Grant Center, which decided to erect a 15-foot clown statue. Only a few people had gone there and used their credit cards to buy things because it was instantly labeled as a “Scary Clown Plaza.” It can be likened to a haunted building as a few people would dare to go there. Adults usually think of a clown as a pleasant fellow, but if you look carefully at the blood-colored lips and the utterly white face, it is indeed scary.
A Verifiable Case
There is at least one verifiable case of a clown “attacking” children. In 1992, in Noblesville, Indiana USA, a Ronald McDonald statue fell down on top of a six-year-old girl causing the fleshy part of her fingers to be severed. It was reattached, thanks to the surgeons, but it was still malformed. The insurance would have covered the surgery anyway, but the family was also awarded damages in the amount of $41,000. It would not compensate for the trauma felt by the child, but it was probably accidental, so we could not blame the company as well. But we can only guess that they had made the foundation of the statues sturdier to avoid more accidents from happening in the future.
The story here ends well, but the events leading up to the end was traumatizing for the children involved and the babysitter. While we can only speculate why the clown did not cause harm right away, we should be thankful that it did not happen. To a degree, we should be thankful for the quick wits of the babysitter and the parents who were able to identify the danger and move out of it right away. Also, yes, clowns can be scary, but we should not be afraid of them. We should be afraid of criminals, recognize that there are many in the society, work towards not being one, and making sure we take steps to protect ourselves and the people we care about.