RAPIDES PARISH, LA (KSLA) - The capture of a former local television personality wanted out of Rapides Parish for alleged crimes involving the sexual abuse of children has closed a 37-year-old cold case, according to authorities.
On Tuesday, U.S. Marshals and the Rapides Parish Sheriff's Department announced that Frank Selas was taken into custody in California Monday evening.
Selas hosted the TV show "Mr. Wonder" on KNOE in the late 1970s.
According to the Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office, Selas would invite children between the ages of 5 and 11 to have free camping weekends and outdoor activities with "Mr. Wonder." Some of these weekends were conducted in Rapides Parish in the early summer of 1979. That is when RPSO became involved in the investigation, along with the Ouachita Parish Sheriff's Office.
Just days after the allegations were made, Selas and his family disappeared and had not been seen since.
The case was reopened at the request of Rapides Parish Sherriff William Hilton, who was a detective at the time of the disappearance.
In announcing Selas' capture on Tuesday, the authorities emphasized that detectives believe there are more victims out there, possibly over several jurisdictions on Louisiana, nationally and even internationally as Selas traveled to several countries including Japan and Central and South America.
"If there was a definition of a sexual predator, this is one and I am so proud of the work of our investigators along with the assistance of Ouachita Parish Sheriff's Office and our local members of the U. S. Marshals Western District-Louisiana, Violent Offenders Task Force, in locating this suspect after all these years. We never forget our victims" said Sheriff Hilton.
Anyone with information is encouraged to call the RPSO Criminal Investigations Division at 318-473-6727 or Main Office at 318-473-6700. Please direct any information to Detective Stephen Phillips.