Cops ‘find’ red balloon floating in Stephen King’s hometown

A red balloon is the calling card of Pennywise.

Stephen King
FILE - In this Nov. 13, 2013 file photo, author Stephen King poses for the cameras, during a promotional tour in Paris. This year’s BookExpo will feature a popular father-and-son combination: Stephen and Owen King. Convention organizers ReedPop told The Associated Press on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017 that the two authors will be featured at a breakfast gathering June 1 at the Jacob Javits Center in New York. (AP Photo/Francois Mori, File)

BANGOR, Maine (AP) — Police in the Maine city that’s home to Stephen King played a prank to coincide with the opening of the horror film “It,” based on King’s book.

The police department said Thursday on Facebook that a red balloon was “found” floating near the department’s stuffed duck, which has been the department’s mascot over the years.

A red balloon is the calling card of Pennywise, the sewer-dwelling, homicidal clown in “It.” The book is set in Derry, Maine. King has said the fictionalized town is based on Bangor.

Lt. Tim Cotton joked in the Facebook post that the balloon’s discovery was “a little creepy.” He says King says he has “no idea” how the balloon ended up behind the secure doors of the police department.

The feature film “It” opened Friday.