Cook Islands Police have yielded few leads, including reported sightings, and are asking for assistance from public as they step up search for the teenager who has been missing since July this year.
Police are hopeful that fresh information from the
public will help shed more light on the whereabouts of Timoa Kokoria, who was
reported missing in late July.
The 19-year-old Kiribati national was dropped off at
Kaena Restaurant on the afternoon of July 24, and subsequently reported missing
on July 27.
In a statement issued yesterday, Cook Islands Police
said investigations as to the young man’s whereabouts, or tracking any
movements, have yielded few leads, including reported sightings.
“Over the past several days, all information gathered
by Police have undergone review, including renewed interviews,” the statement
“Appeals are being broadened for anyone who may have
any information to come forward as investigations by a team of several police
officers continue. All such information
is treated in confidence and will assist the team in their efforts to locate
Kokoria had not returned to work at the Rarotongan
Resort since July 24, or returned home.
Family liaison spokesperson Claire Samson-Piniata, who
is Kokoria’s aunt, said for a long time “it didn’t seem like the police were
“There wasn’t much on social media or in the papers,
it felt like they weren’t interested in this case,” Samson-Piniata said.
“However, it is encouraging that police are now
putting more information on social media, it seems like they’re taking it more
seriously now. We’re all trying to help the family.”
Cook Islands News interviewed the parents of the
missing teenager last week. Kokoria’s mother, Rakoake Teaitao told the
newspaper that nothing like this had ever happened before.
“If he went drinking with a friend he rings us, he
contacts us,” Teaitao said.
“If he’s gone
to a friend he would tell us, he would let us know.
“We’re not sure whether he is still alive.”
she was not sure why he had not returned home.
She said Kokoria could not have left the country
because his passport was still with her.
that Kokoria also spent a lot of time on his phone but had not been seen active
on Facebook since he went missing.