Residents of a county in Iowa are getting an uneasy feeling about mysterious groups of so-called "men in black" who hang out along the side of roads, sometimes stepping into roadways, and even in people's yards.
They wear black trenchcoats and say nothing, then vanish, several citizens have complained to local police, reports KWQC-TV. The sheriff's office reports receiving several complaints and has asked for the public's help in identifying the men. Law enforcement is also asking residents who spot the men to "call 911 immediately."
"My son has experienced this and it's no joke," a local woman posted on the Facebook page for the Muscatine County Sheriff's Office. "It was really a frightening experience to him."
The police don't yet consider the cloaked men a criminal issue, but a "public safety one."
Residents, however, are spooked by the men because they don't know what their motivation is. In addition, Iowa is an "open carry" gun state, meaning the men in black could be carrying loaded firearms. On the other hand, people who don't like the men in black could also be brandishing weapons.
"These fools think they're funny scaring people, until they meet the wrong person," warned one man posting on the sheriff's office Facebook page. "People have the right to defend themselves and if someone jumps out in front of me threatening the safety of my grand kids, God be with that fool."