Cal Poly freshman Kristin Smart vanished in 1996

By KC Baker
January 22, 2020 12:40 PM
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The family of missing California college student Kristin Smart may soon get more information about what happened to the 19-year-old who vanished more than two decades ago.

The California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, freshman went missing in 1996 after attending an off-campus party.

Despite years of searching for the bright, bubbly teen — with authorities excavating for her remains on the campus in 2016 — the case remains unsolved.

Now, her mother, Denise Smart, says the Federal Bureau of Investigation recently contacted her about her daughter’s baffling case, telling her to expect some news.

“Be ready,” Denise Smart said the FBI told her, The Stockton Record reported. “This is really going to be something you don’t expect. We want to give you the support you need.”

The FBI told her to arrange for someone to serve as a family spokesperson once the announcement is made public, she told the outlet.

The FBI also suggested that she and her family “might want to get away for a while” afterward, Smart said.

The one thing she wasn’t told? When she and her family are getting the news.

“I wish I knew when,” Smart told the outlet, “because it’s very anxiety-producing.”

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“It’s like, ‘Can you give me the flight plan?’” Smart said. “When is this happening?”

Kristin disappeared on May 25, 1996, after attending a party, police have said. She was last seen with fellow freshman Paul Flores, who told authorities he escorted her to her dorm, they said.

Flores had long been a person of interest in Smart’s disappearance, but it wasn’t immediately clear if that is still the case.

PEOPLE’s calls to the Smarts and the FBI were not immediately returned.