The parents of Kristin Smart on Thursday sued the father of Paul Flores, who was charged last week with killing the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo student in 1996.
The civil lawsuit accuses Ruben Flores of intentional infliction of emotional distress, alleging that he moved Smart's body from beneath his deck last year to try to cover up her 1996 killing.
James Murphy, attorney for Stan and Denise Smart, filed the lawsuit within hours of Ruben Flores' release on $50,000 bail from San Luis Obispo County sheriff's custody. He was charged with being an accessory after the fact in Smart's killing. Paul Flores was arrested and subsequently charged with murder, and remains behind bars. Both have denied wrongdoing.
"There is compelling evidence they moved Kristin's remains as the investigators began to get closer and closer to solving her murder," Murphy said.
The suit comes after prosecutors alleged that Ruben Flores moved Smart's body from the earth beneath his Arroyo Grande deck.
In the lawsuit, Murphy alleges that four days after detectives served a search warrant at Ruben Flores's home on Feb. 5, 2020, the 80-year-old along with two other people removed the remains.
"Ruben Flores and Doe defendants 1 and 2 worked through the night, under the cover of darkness, to remove the remains of Kristin Smart to avoid having those remains at 710 White Ct. in the event of an additional search of the property," the lawsuit says.
San Luis Obispo County prosecutors said last week that they were investigating whether Flores sexually assaulted women in the San Pedro area, where he has lived for the last 15 years. And the Los Angeles Police Department disclosed that detectives had gathered evidence implicating Flores in two alleged sexual assaults. Redondo Beach police in 2013 presented a rape case against Flores to Los Angeles County prosecutors, who declined to file charges for lack of evidence.
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.