By Shereen Siewert
Marking the anniversary of Cassandra Ayon’s disappearance, officials are urging anyone with information to come forward as they continue to search for answers in the case.
Ayon, 27, was last seen at about 3:45 a.m. on Oct. 3, 2020 in Unity when she left a friend’s home. She was reported missing the next day by her parents, who called 911 as their concerns mounted. Police say Ayon’s mother last saw Ayon at 1 p.m. Oct. 2 in Loyal when the two had lunch together. A friend of Ayon sounded the alarm when Ayon failed to contact him for a planned shopping trip.
Ayon drove a black 2015 Chevy Impala with a license plate of AHZ-2509. She would have turned 28 on Sept. 1.
On June 7, 2021, Dept. of Justice prosecutors charged Jesus Contreras Perez, of Mosinee, with first degree intentional homicide, hiding a corpse, and stalking causing bodily harm in connection with the disappearance. Police say Contreras Perez repeatedly stalked and threatened Ayon, then killed her and hid her body.
Police say Ayon was seen bearing multiple bruises in the months leading up to her death. Witnesses also said Ayon was frightened of Contreras Perez, who allegedly threatened her and followed her on multiple occasions including the night before she disappeared.
Witnesses describe a tumultuous relationship between the two and said Ayon broke up with Contreras Perez because he was abusive to her and also because he was cheating on her, according to court documents. Police were told Ayon had bruises on her wrist and arm and was repeatedly threatened by him.
A review of the defendant’s internet search records showed Contreras Perez searched for information including how to check for license plate addresses, how to make a firearm silencer, how to test a silencer and what a silencer sounds like, according to the criminal complaint. Cell phone data showed Contreras Perez and Ayon were in close proximity at the time of her disappearance, prosecutors said. Contreras Perez later reported his phone missing.
Though police believe Ayon is dead, her body has not been found. Contreras Perez is being held on a $1 million cash bond.
The Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Clark County Sheriff’s Department on Tuesday issued a news release reminding the public of Ayon’s disappearance.
Anyone with information is urged to call the Clark County Sheriff’s Department at 715-743-3157 or call the Clark County Sheriff’s Office Tip line at 888-847-2576.
This investigation is led by the DOJ Division of Criminal Investigation and the Clark County Sheriff’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Clark County District Attorney Melissa Inlow and DOJ Criminal Litigation Unit Assistant Attorney General Annie Jay. The Clark County District Attorney’s Office is providing victim services.
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