Kristin Smart story to go national on Monday

July 16, 2011

Denise Smart (l) tapes her interview with Beth Holloway

The case of Kristin Smart, the Cal Poly student missing for the last 15 years, gets national exposure Monday night, thanks to a television show on the Lifetime Channel.

Smart’s story will be the subject of next week’s episode of “Vanished!,” a show devoted to finding missing persons, hosted by Beth Holloway, mother of the college student Natalie Holloway who vanished while on vacation in Aruba.

The segment is scheduled to air Monday at 8 p.m.

Kristin’s mother, Denise, posted an announcement about “Vanished!” on her Facebook page. “Kristin was abducted on May 25, 1996 from Cal Poly. The suspect remains free. Many witnesses remain silent! Please  help us find that someone who holds a key to finding our precious daughter! Our hope lies with your support and help!”

Denise Smart, who lives in Stockton, came down to San Luis Obispo last February to be interviewed for the Lifetime show. A camera crew also talked with new county sheriff Ian Parkinson, who pledged to re-open the investigation.

The Smart family and their supporters are pressing Parkinson to allow outside law enforcement experts to review the case.


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Go to this web site, Citizen, to take a Cal Poly archeology class….

I appreciate the useful critcism, However, I don’t find a single fact about the Smart case from any of you, though a few of you profess to know more. This is a common mistake of law enforcement: they fail to cooperate while the perp takes advantage of the chauvanistic competition between jurisdictions.

You rely too much on an agency with limited personnel and training, rather than empowering yourselves. The only difference between you and them is

training and education; and

making an effort to stay off drugs and alcohol; and

regular exercise.

As usual, Cindy, it’s nice to know you “boned up” on the case, but your factual information is noticeably absent. Your competitive spirit mirrors that of the law enforcement mind: they’d rather leave the case unsolved than share information with other law enforcement agencies who could help.

In this case, you are keeping concerned members of the public in the dark. Why make them repeat the work you have already done, if you really have bothered to “study the case” by reading old newspaper articles (which is a good place to start.)

Typo, again, no facts from you. I contributed something to the discussion. I never claimed to do all the work. The point of my blurb was that each person who hopes for a successful resolution to this case should decide for themselves what is they can do to assist. Each person should use his or her own expertize and strength and make the process a part of one’s normal routine. What bothers me is the overriding hostility towards personal initiative, and lack of a cooperative attitude. This is a regional trait which has been instilled in you by your bureaucracy, I think.

Second thing I want to say to you is: What does IMO mean? Or is that a secret, too?

Third thing is, at least you contributed one positive piece of information, which the others did not: we are in agreement that help should be obtained from outside agencies. So, just for practice, why don’t we put ourselves in the shoes of law enforcement? Let’s pretend we are members of a team, who hold the opinions we do now, but we have to work with each other. How do we arrive at a consensus and agree on a course of action. Division is delay.

My final response is, if the suspect’s name was already published, there is no reason not to use it, especially if you are so certain he is guilty. What you don’t want to do is, stick someone else’s name in there who has nothing to do with the case, and has not been named as a suspect. As far as PF goes, I remember reading the name of a suspect as a party in a lawsuit brought by the family against the Smarts. The Smarts tried twice to get law enforcement to release what they knew, so the Smarts could use their own investigators. The judge, Roger Picquet denied their request. So, I guess I am not the only one who believes regular citizens can have just as good chance of finding a piece to the puzzle.

I think most of us who have watched this case over the years have wrestled with the many unanswered questions regarding what Cal Poly did, did not do or refused to do when it first became apparent that a young beautiful girl went missing. We also wondered if a son of a law enforcement officer was getting special treatment? Was there a cover up?

One wonders if any answers will be forthcoming, but with new public employees in place, maybe we can have a little hope on some closure for the parents and the community… and a promise that those intrusted with the safety of others will fulfill their obligation regardless of who may be involved.

So well spoken! Yet, so ineffective…..

Beth Holloway and Denise Smart both lost their daughters and have suffered every parent’s nightmare. Yet somehow they press on, in the spotlight, searching for justice. I admire them both so much. Perhaps this show on Lifetime will help resolve the Smart case once and for all.

Don’t give up, Mrs. Smart. Sooner or later justice will prevail. You’ve done an honorable job as a mother to keep your daughter’s spirit and story alive. We’re pulling for your family!

Yes, never give up, we all give you our support and hope the perps are caught and put away for ever so they will no longer harm our innocent children…

To the perpetrator:

Pro 1:24 Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded;

Pro 1:25 But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof:

Pro 1:26 I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh;

Pro 1:27 When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you.

Pro 1:28 Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me:

Pro 1:29 For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD:

Pro 1:30 They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof.

Pro 1:31 Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices.

Pro 1:32 For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.

Pro 1:33 But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.

You know nothing about the Smart case. You come across as a name-dropping, grandstanding, and insensitive boob.

Response to Oto

This case has always bothered me because it is always in the news, but the only thing the public knows about it is that Kristin’s mother believes that her daughter may have been taken by a male whom she knew. We also know that a young man who learned of Kristin’s disappearance was so certain that the family’s suspicion was right, that he pressed for authorities to dig up a portion of the suspect’s yard, (which had been covered with a concrete patio.) This was done, and nothing was found. Then, if memory serves me right, the boy’s parents sued the Smarts.

All these facts have been repeated in the newspapers many times. But I have not read a single clue as to why they are so certain this suspect is the perpetrator. What I do believe is that this woman’s disappearance will likely be solved by the public, as a result of stumbling upon a clue which leads investigators to her captors, or tragically, to human remains.

When I was in school, I read a book by Robert Keppel about how investigators need to know archeology (the science involves digging in the earth without damaging the fragile artifacts being recovered;) entomology (the study of insect species;) chemistry and soil science. I think Cal Poly, Cuesta, or AHC would be a good place to find the right people and the the right courses with which to launch an auxilliary investigation.

That investigation could be as simple as a few friends deciding upon the three most likely areas a person would place remains within a ten mile radius of the place where Kristin Smart was last seen, and then hiking the area in a measured grid, walking shoulder to shoulder.

For horse riders or bike enthusiasts, it could be as simple as choosing to fully explore an area not accessible to cars but within a quarter mile of one of the county’s winding back roads, such as Biddle Road.

And for writers and researchers, it could be doing comprehensive research on law enforcement agencies, and on experts who have recovered missing persons in the past. The Smarts should most definitely seek help from outside agencies, and they should seek help from people Kristin’s age, who are smart enough, and serious enough to do the tedious and methodical work necessary for a prolonged investigation. I am just a regular person, but this is what I believe.

A good investigator should also be in good enough physical shape to go on long hikes, and have basic wilderness training. They need some basic math; a few archeological tools; and must know how to map out a grid on a section of terrain which (I would guess,) is no bigger than 200 yards by 200 yards. Once they map out a grid using string line and stakes, they need to get down on their hands and knees and comb it inch by inch. The Cal Poly archeology department might even be able to recommend a book which explains these techniques.

Robert Keppel once told me, “There’s no one better than about 200 16-year old Explorer Scouts when you’re searching for a strand of hair in the middle of a forest…” That was as humorous as Keppel ever got, as far as I knew. By chance, I met Mr. Keppel at a “booksigning” event at a bookstore in Seattle. At the time, he was the lead investigator for the Washington State Attorney General’s office. At the time of his booksigning, the Green River murderer had not yet been caught. He had written a book about this Washington state investigation.

I told him that, after reading about the investigation, I wished I could do something to help. He looked at me with controlled contempt, and politely said to me, “What could you possibly contribute to this investigation that law enforcement experts could not?”

I said, “I don’t have a clue, but I’d be happy to spend two hours a day for the rest of my life to find out.”

He just smiled.

The Green River killer was arrested on Nov. 30, 2001, seven years after my last conversation with Keppel, and more than twenty years after the remains of his earliest know victim was discovered.

What makes me think regular people can help is this: Even assuming that law enforcement fully explored any clues or leads, many people would not want to talk to cops, and may be more likely to speak with their peers. And if you want to see justice done, you have to keep the faith and learn to love the process, not just a successful resolution to the case. You have to keep the faith.

You are so far off, it isn’t even funny. For starters, Cal Poly doesn’t have an archeology department. Read about the case before spouting your opinions.

It doesn’t help for an investigation to go off in all different directions, and I think there is evidence that has not been released to the public. I hope that Parkinson will allow outside investigators in on another look at this case.

oto, Your heart sounds like it’s in the right place but people responding to you are correct, you obviously don’t know anything about this case. I “boned up” on the details a few months ago when Denise Smart was asking for help, it wasn’t difficult to do, there is plenty of information out there. Please be considerate of the Smart family, their efforts haven’t been in vein, the rest of us have been reading.

Sherlock, you need to read the facts because you obviously don’t know them. I won’t counter everything in your post but there is plenty of evidence that leads towards PF, he did it no doubt about it (didn’t say his name, PF could mean Peter Frampton). I am a person that doesn’t usually point the finger until all the facts are in and the trial is over. But like Casey Anthony and OJ there are certain cases that should be pretty cut and dry. I followed this case very closely as many others that lived here during that time. The Smarts know who committed this terrible crime and so does every thinking person that has followed the case. IMO the Smarts don’t need amateur sleuths coming and telling them how to find their daughter they need pressure put on ‘P’eter ‘F’rampton so he will confess and tell them where they can find their daughter. The Smarts IMO also need the local LE to release all of thier info on this case so the Smarts can themselves investigate this case. After all these years they are at least entitled to the crime files so they can do what they need to do. This is my opinion, I don’t really know what Mrs. Smart’s opinion is regarding these particular aspects of it.


I wish I could visit you in never-never-land…. I am sure it is a beautiful diversion from reality.