NewsKristin Smart Case


Podcast dedicated to Kristin Smart investigation is No. 2 podcast on iTunes

'Your Own Backyard' was launched in 2019
Posted at 9:41 AM, Apr 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-16 14:33:33-04

The podcast dedicated to the disappearance of Kristin Smart hit 7.5 million downloads this week.

The milestone came just two days after the arrest of Paul and Ruben Flores.

"Your Own Backyard" was also the No. 2 podcast on iTunes this week.

Launched in 2019, podcaster Chris Lambert quit his full-time job mid-year to dedicate seven days a week to the show.

San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson says Lambert’s work helped with the case, including bringing national attention to it.

“The podcast brought onto the forefront for everybody, which I think is a really good thing. I think the tough part about it is people hear it and then they believe that they either know what happened or that action should be taken immediately because they believe that Flores is responsible,” Sheriff Ian Parkinson told radio host Adam Montiel during an interview Thursday morning on Coast 104.5.

Kristin was last seen walking with Paul Flores on campus from an off-campus party May 25, 1996, according to witnesses.

While he had been considered a person of interest since shortly after her disappearance, it was not until last month when the sheriff’s office announced he was their prime suspect.

“They’re (people) absolutely entitled to their opinion. If things were that easy, we would have a really bad system because we still have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. If we can’t do that, if we can’t reap that burden, we have a responsibility to exonerate the innocent,” Parkinson said.

He went on to say, “As much as I think Chris researched and did a great job of presenting what information is out there, there’s a tremendous amount of information that he does not know and also, there’s some things that are out there, I think more or less folklore that… we really can’t standup and refute things…. The fact is, trying not to talk about the case is difficult.”

Parkinson added, “I know people want to know more answers and they will eventually, but right now, we have to be concerned with the... and respectful of the court process.”

The sheriff’s office said the podcast brought at least one new piece of information – a witness who had not previously been interviewed – to their attention.

Lambert says he never expected the results he achieved from “Your Own Backyard.”

Flores has been charged with one count of first-degree murder and is being held without bail in San Luis Obispo County Jail.

Ruben has been charged with accessory to murder after the fact. Investigators say they believe he helped hide her body after the murder.

He remained in custody Friday morning in lieu of $250,000 bail.

Neil have entered pleas and both are due back in court Monday afternoon.