The distraught father of the 32-year-old woman who vanished in March of last year, Francis Kombo, has spoken out for the first time since her live-in boyfriend Nathan Hightman was sentenced.
Francis Kombo, Ms. Gakwa’s father, claims that she messaged him on March 9 and has not been seen or heard from since.
Prior to her mysterious disappearance, Gakwa had travelled to the US in 2019 with the intention of beginning a career in healthcare.
In June, Gakwa’s boyfriend received a sentence of up to six years in prison for felony theft and fraudulent credit card use.
He also received a Ksh1.8 million fine and restitution order after admitting to stealing thousands of dollars from Gakwa a few weeks after she disappeared in Wyoming.
“The man has appealed again, and says the sentencing is too harsh.This is torture, I do not understand why he would appeal after pleaing guilty to the charged. He has not been charged for the disappearance of Irene due to insufficient evidence, the authorities raided his home and they told me they still need more for them to take him in for the disappearance of my daughter,’’ he said.
Hightman has not been charged in Gakwa’s disappearance. In March, he entered a plea of guilty to three financial offenses: theft, fraudulent use of a credit card, and crimes against intellectual property, each of which carried a single felony count.
Hightman told police Gakwa came home one night in late February, packed her clothes in two plastic bags, and left in a dark-colored SUV, adding that he hasn’t seen or heard from her since then.
Hightman admitted to taking almost $3,700 out of her bank account and spending $3,230 on her credit card in the weeks following Gakwa’s disappearance. He testified before the court that he took the money out in order to make her call him when she ran out of money.
The father claims he has no idea where his daughter is. His hope is to find his daughter, dead or alive, as this will provide the family with much-needed closure.