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By Matt Gryta

News Staff Reporter

LAKEWOOD – Police say they weren’t laughing Sunday night when they were called to a restaurant disturbance and arrived to find an unruly patron dressed as the Joker, from Batman fame.

Aaron Chase, 24, of Jamestown, was taken to WCA Hospital for a psychiatric evaluation after he was arrested by Lakewood-Busti police officers at Applebee’s.

Chase, who faces court proceedings later this week, was drunk and began harassing restaurant patrons when he walked into the place, his face painted white with black circles around his eyes. His hair was dyed green and he wore red lipstick painted in the shape of a menacing smile, police said.

Officers said they learned Chase earlier Sunday evening had been at the Good Times Saloon in the Town of Ellicott and was kicked out of then when he allegedly made gun-like gestures at a bartender.

Tim Ruch, the owner of the Good Times, told police Chase has been coming into his establishment dressed as the Joker several times in recent weeks, making patrons and bartenders nervous.

Police officials told The Buffalo News the department was treating Chase’s actions seriously in light of the Aurora, Colo., movie theater massacre last year, which police say was carried out by a mentally ill man dressed as the Joker.

email: mgryta@buffnews.com