Her disappearance sparked changes in campus security. Twenty-five years later, an arrest for the murder of Kristin Smart.

San Luis Obispo County authorities charged Paul Flores of San Pedro with the first-degree murder of Kristin Smart last week, nearing the conclusion of a mystery that has haunted the community for decades.

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo student Kristin Smart has been missing nearly 25 years. She vanished after a college party on May 25, 1996 when she was just 19 years old. Her case remains one of the most well-known missing persons cases in California.

Smart was declared dead in 2002. Her disappearance prompted the Kristin Smart Campus Security Act, which was signed into law by Governor Pete Wilson in 1998. It requires public colleges to enter into agreements with local police about reporting cases of violence against students.

Flores has long been suspected in the case. In addition to his alleged involvement in Smart’s disappearance, authorities say he is the subject of sexual assault investigations in LA County. His father, Ruben Flores, was also arrested last week on suspicion of being an accessory to the crime.

Read more about the arrests here.

See also:

Where is Kristin Smart’s body? SLO County investigators think they have a good idea.