Man arrested after 3.5 months-long investigation into attempted toddler abduction in Lake Delton

Deer Run Estates subdivision sign in May 2019.
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LAKE DELTON, Wis. (WMTV)-- The Lake Delton Police Department announced the arrest of a 22-year-old man on Thursday after a more than three months-long investigation into an attempted abduction of a toddler.

On May 11, officers were called to a home in the Deer Run subdivision of Lake Delton. Authorities said a couple inside the home had been awakened by a noise in a two-year-old child's bedroom. The parents found the child alone outside of the home and called police.

Lake Delton Police Chief Daniel Hardman said the child had minor injuries.

In a joint effort with the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI), Lake Delton Police canvassed the neighborhood to develop leads.

Hardman said James Sellers, a resident of the subdivision, emerged as a suspect. After investigators searched his home, evidence was found that tied Sellers to the crime.

Sellers was arrested on Thursday without incident. He was arrested on one count of Abduction of a Child, one count of Burglary, and one count of Recklessly Causing Physical Harm to a Child.

“One of my top priorities as Chief is to promote that our staff conduct thorough and effective investigations," said Hardman. "This crime was especially important to me to be solved to restore a sense of security and provide some closure for the victim and the community. I am proud of the tenacity and effort demonstrated by all the people involved in this investigation.”

Sellers is expected to appear in Sauk County Circuit Court for his initial appearance on Friday.