Davette Kathryn Gaunt

Gaunt, circa 1992; Christopher McDonald, circa 2017

  • Missing Since 01/01/1992
  • Missing From San Diego County, California
  • Classification Endangered Missing
  • Sex Female
  • Race White
  • Date of Birth 09/25/1959 (64)
  • Age 32 years old
  • Height and Weight 5'2 - 5'6, 106 - 121 pounds
  • Distinguishing Characteristics Caucasian female. Blonde or brown hair, brown eyes. Gaunt's ears are pierced and she has a scar on her left wrist. Her nickname is Dee.

Details of Disappearance

Gaunt was last seen at her home in San Diego County, California sometime in early 1992. She lived on Anza Avenue just outside the Vista city limits.

At the time of her disappearance, she and her live-in boyfriend, Christopher McDonald, were in the middle of a custody battle over their two-year-old daughter. Gaunt has never been heard from again. By the summer of 1992, McDonald had a new girlfriend who moved into the residence he'd shared with Gaunt.

No one reported Gaunt missing; it wasn't until May 1993 that a witness told police she had been missing for over a year and may have been murdered. McDonald raised their daughter for only a short time before sending her to Massachusetts to be raised by his parents.

In August 2017, McDonald was arrested in Safford, Arizona, where he'd lived for years, and charged with Gaunt's murder. A photo of him is posted with this case summary.

Investigators believe he murdered her at their home in San Diego County on or around January 1, 1992 and disposed of her body in northern San Diego County or Riverside County. They described the case against McDonald as circumstantial. He is awaiting trial.

Foul play is suspected in Gaunt's case due to the circumstances involved.

Investigating Agency

  • San Diego County Sheriff's Department 858-974-2143

Updated 2 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated August 24, 2017; picture added, details of disappearance updated.