Opinion by San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson
I am extremely pleased with the jury’s decision today to convict Paul Flores for the murder of Kristin Smart. I am disappointed, however, for the acquittal of Ruben Flores as an accessory for helping conceal the crime. Even so, that does not temper my profound gratitude for the verdict against Paul Flores.
We thank the jury for their dedicated service. My thanks also to District Attorney Dan Dow and Deputy District Attorney Chris Peuvrelle for the successful prosecution of this case. I also want to take this time to thank all the members of the Sheriff’s Office who worked on this case over the years. Because of you and your tireless commitment, we are able to bring this case to a successful resolution and a verdict that is right and just.
My thoughts now are with the Smart family. I made a vow to them many years ago, that we would not let Kristin’s memory be forgotten. Nor would we let her killer go unpunished. I thank them for their patience and support during this most difficult of times.
This has been a very long case. A long trial. And a long road to justice. But there is no true justice until Kristin is reunited with her family. This investigation will not be closed until we find Kristin.
As I mentioned when I announced the arrests in this case, it is my hope that we are able to bring some closure to the Smart family. Peace to our community. And justice, once and for all, for Kristin.