SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - The family of Kristin Smart, the California college student who vanished 23 years ago after attending a party near her school, was reportedly told by federal agents to be prepared for news and to secure a family spokesperson.
Denise Smart, the woman's mother, told the Stockton Record that she was contacted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and was told to "be ready."
"This is really going to be something you don't expect. We want to give you the support you need," she said she was told.
Kristin Smart is shown in a file image.
The report said the FBI was not clear on what the development was, she was told that her family might want to "get away for a while," and she should secure a family spokesperson.
The mother admitted to the paper that since she was told about the development she has had anxiety.
Smart, who was 19 when she vanished, attended California Polytechnic State University and was last seen in the early morning of May 25, 1996, while returning to her dorm after a party near the campus. At the time, another student told authorities he left Smart near her dormitory after they and another female student walked back.
According to reports at the time, a neighbor in Smart’s dorm called university police the next morning and reported that she hadn’t returned. But other students said they thought she had gone camping, so officers didn’t declare her missing for three days.
A file image shows a missing poster of Kristin Smart, who went missing on May 25, 1996 while attending California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo. (Photo by Axel Koester/Sygma via Getty Images)
The student who told of leaving Smart near her dorm was questioned by authorities and his home was searched but he was not arrested or charged in the case. A California law, the Kristin Smart Campus Safety Act of 1998, now requires campus police to spell out exactly when they will call in outside authorities to investigate a violent crime.
"It's probably imminently going to break I would say within a month," the mother said. "Something's going to happen."