ANITA, Iowa -- Hanging scarecrows along Main Street is a Halloween tradition that brings joy to the town of Anita.
"We have people stop by and take pictures of the scarecrows when they are driving through town," said Tracey Knutson, a longtime Anita resident.
A Batman scarecrow caught the eye of many in the community because its designer was a six-year-old named Kanii Fogleman, who was proud of his work. "I'm really happy," said the first grader.
Late last Wednesday night, two individuals were not content with just a picture in front of Batman. Tracey said, "It stayed up there maybe two days and somebody stole it."
Surveillance video from nearby BK&K insurance late that night shows the thieves in action, proving the night is truly darkest before dawn.
Tracey said, "It is just a scarecrow, but it was a kid's scarecrow that worked real hard and wanted to do something for his community."
Kanii wrote a note on the empty pole in an attempt to get the scarecrow returned.
"I wrote that you are naughty, whoever stole it," said Kanii.
Kanii's father Brian said the community then banded together. "By the next morning, there was a Facebook post, people saying let's build another and make it bigger and better and show them."
To Kanii's surprise, the Dark Knight rose again that Sunday. "It's bigger and the eyes glow up," Kanii said.
Seeing the young boy's reaction made community members swell with pride. "I'm not a real emotional person, but when I went home Sunday afternoon I had tears in my eyes because it made me feel so good," Tracey said.
From darkness to the light, a child's Halloween was saved by silent guardians and watchful protectors in his own community.
"Anita is a wonderful community, and that is small town living. That's why we want to be in this place," said Brian.
The thieves still have not been caught.
Kanii said he has decided to dress as The Flash for Halloween this year.