Link found between kidnapping victim's mom and suspect

Kidnapped teen found inside Conyers home

ELLENWOOD, Ga. — A Clayton County teen who was abducted from her home early Tuesday morning is now back with her family.

A neighbor told Channel 2 Action News she saw Ayvani Perez, 14, return to the family home in Ellenwood early Wednesday night.

However, Channel 2 Action News has learned Ayvani did not spend the night at the home that she was abducted from nearly 48 hours earlier.

Investigators announced in a new conference Wednesday that they had arrested Wildrego Jackson, 29, and Juan Alberto Rodriguez, 40, in connection to Ayvani's abduction.

Police said two armed men broke into Ayvani's home early Tuesday and kidnapped her after asking her mother for money and jewelry.

Police said Rodriguez and Jackson are not the same men that were pictured in the sketches investigators released on Tuesday.

They said the men in the sketches are the ones that carried out the abduction, and they remain on the loose.

"We believe those two suspects in the drawings are still at large," said Special Agent Rick Maxwell with the FBI.

Clayton County Police Chief Greg Porter said Ayvani was in seemingly good health when police found her and she had been evaluated after police said they located her at a home in Conyers.

Federal agents wouldn't say how they came to find Ayvani at the Conyers home.

Porter said the suspects were captured "through hardcore police work."

"I want to thank the community as a whole for supporting the Clayton County Police Department and all the collaborations between the agencies," Porter said.

After digging into both men's criminal background, Channel 2 Action News learned there was a connection between one of the men arrested and Ayvani's mother, Maria Corral.

ICE agents confirmed to Channel 2 Action News that Rodriguez was arrested in December 2012 in Henry County under the name of Juan Aberto Contreras-Ramirez, and was charged with trafficking marijuana.

Channel 2's Erica Byfield confirmed that Ayvani's mother was also arrested in that same incident.

Drug agents said they found 500 pounds of marijuana in the Henry County home where the Rodriguez and Ayvani's mother were arrested.

Charges against both were later dropped but the case indicates this week's kidnapping may not be as random as authorities first believed.

Rodriguez is currently being held on immigration-related charges. Jackson faces conspiracy to commit kidnapping charges.

Channel 2 Action News dug into Jackson's record and found he has an extensive criminal background dating back to at least 2001.

Records show multiple arrests through the years on charges that include assault, child cruelty, sale and distribution of cocaine, marijuana possession, and being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm. He was also arrested on obstruction charges.

Neighbors told Byfield they are very happy the teen was returned safely.

"We have just been praying as a community for her safe return and so I'm so excited," said neighbor Fran Pond.

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Pond said she doesn't know the girl but in the day and a half she saw Ayvani's picture all over the place, she felt a connection.

"My heart goes out because I'm a mom, so my heart went out to her mom," Pond said.

Lucille Howard lives two doors down from Ayvani and her family. Howard just moved to the seemingly quiet neighborhood three days ago. She made a point to hug the teen Wednesday evening shortly after Ayvani returned home safely.

"Something like that really shook me up. But I'm going to find out more about this thing because some things don't make sense to me," Howard said. "She smiled, she gave me the biggest smile, she said thank you."

Howard says the teen looked calm but tired and glad to be home. Now Howard and other neighbors have questions about the circumstances surrounding Ayvani's kidnapping

"Just meeting her today, it doesn't matter what happened, since she is home safe. That's my main concern," Howard said.