On March 26, 1999, in Saginaw, Texas, 6-year-old Opal Jennings was playing with two other children in her grandmother's side yard when a black car drove up. A man got out and snatched Opal, whisking her away in his vehicle. it all happened in a flash, before her horrified grandparents could react.
Local law enforcement and the FBI organised a massive search throughout the Dallas-Fort Worth area, while Opal's photograph was widely circulated in newspapers and on television. A probation officer noted that on March 27 -- one day after Opal's kidnapping -- ordinarily slovenly sex offender Richard Lee 'Ricky' Franks, had cut his long hair and was clean-shaven and neatly dressed. Why had he suddenly cleaned up his act?