The opening line of the May 11 airing of Crime Watch Daily is daunting as Chris Hansen’s narration leads with “a beer run to the local 7-11 is considered to be the last trip of Will Cierzan’s life!”
On January 26, 2017, after preparing a chicken dinner for his wife, Will vanished. Now, after 15 weeks of investigation and searching, law enforcement officials have finally come out and stated what we here at FMP have suspected all along: this missing person’s case is really a homicide investigation. To get right to the point, when asked if Will was ‘yanked out of the house’, Detective Ralph Hernandez of the LA County Sheriff’s Department plainly stated that “He (Will) didn’t go on his own free will.” And at the center of the investigation is none other than Will’s nephew Daniel Jacob Cierzen, a young man Will had a close bond with, and who was very important to Will.
Will took the 21 year old high school dropout under his wing and loved him like the son he never had. Will’s sister Andrea Peck describes Danny as a troubled young man who got involved with gang activity and drugs after dropping out of school. He even already has two drug related arrests in his young history. Peck stated that in early January Will had raised concerns that Danny had become distant, and intended to get to the bottom of it. That along with suspicions that Danny might have been pilfering money and gifts cards from Will’s home may have cost him his life. While Peck doesn’t want to believe that, based on the evidence at hand she’s realizing that’s the most likely scenario.
That fateful day, Will had invited Danny over to watch golf with him, an event Will was excited about because it meant the return of Tiger Woods to the PGA. Video surveillance from the neighbor’s camera shows the two leaving the house together some time around noon, where 7-11 cameras caught Will on tape smiling while making a beer run. Shortly after they are again seen returning to the home. And that’s the last time Will is seen.
Will called his wife of 28 years, Linda, later that afternoon. She said Will sounded happy and upbeat during that call. So when she arrived home at 7:00 pm to find dinner cooked and Will’s wallet, money, credit cards, keys, cell phone, and two family dogs still in the house, she became alarmed and called Danny right away. He told her he had left at 1:30 pm that day and didn’t know where Will went. Confused and scared, later that night Linda filed a missing person’s report.
The next day when Will still hadn’t come home, Linda went to the neighbor’s house across the street to review their camera footage. And that’s when she discovered Danny had lied and had been at their home all afternoon. More concerning, he was then spotted quickly backing into the Cierzan driveway at 5:06 pm, staying briefly, then leaving hurriedly again at 5:12 pm. Her heart sank and she knew she needed to call police.
Peck is certain the white SUV seen in surveillance video belongs to Danny, a vehicle she helped her nephew get since he does not have any money. When investigators returned to the house, they found apparent blood stains in the home, blood they now confirmed belongs to Will. Even worse, they verified that Will’s blood was also found at a source outside of the home indicating an assault occurred, but declined to provide that location. That white SUV was also searched by law enforcement, but they have declined to comment on what, if anything was found during the search.
Peck has come forward and stated she believes her nephew as well as his father, her and Will’s youngest brother Chuck, knows what happened to Will but have withheld that information from family. Peck has not seen or heard from Chuck nor Danny since two days after Will disappeared, and they refuse to answer any questions. They have both given statements to the police. Danny lied saying he left at 1:30 pm, and Chuck lied when he stated Danny had returned home by 4:00 pm.
In the video, a close up of a file shows the status of the case:
C: SUSP. CIRCS. P/245(a)(1) PC
M/P: CIERZAN, WILLIAM MW58
Of great concern is the indication that Will is missing under suspicious circumstances, and that Will was struck with a blunt object or cut with a knife. We looked this up. C is Code for the type of charge: Penal Code 245(a)(1) – assault with a deadly weapon or instrument other than a firearm.
We’ll keep following this case until an arrest, or two, is made. You can read the backstory on this case here: https://findingmissingpersons.wordpress.com/home/william-cierzan-58/