NewsKristin Smart Case


Jury deliberations to resume Thursday in Kristin Smart murder trial

Paul Ruben 10-12.JPG
Posted at 12:54 PM, Oct 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-13 15:13:37-04

Jurors in the Kristin Smart murder trial will return to the courtroom Thursday to continue deliberations in the case against Paul and Ruben Flores.

The father and son were tried together in connection with the 1996 disappearance of Kristin Smart from the Cal Poly campus but each have separate juries.

Closing arguments wrapped up last week for each defendant. Both juries have now had at least a full day, if not more, to deliberate but have yet to return verdicts.

Court was dark the first three days of this week.

Monterey County Superior Court officials say that was something planned a while back.

Verdicts will not be read until they’ve been decided for both defendants. They will then be read one after the other.

Paul, 45, is charged with murder in connection with Kristin’s disappearance. Witnesses say Paul was the last person to be seen with her.

His father, Ruben, 81, is charged as an accessory, accused of helping hide Kristin’s body and cover up the alleged crime.

There are approximately 12 weeks of evidence each juror must review and consider as they make their decisions.

If convicted, Paul Flores faces a sentence of 25 years to life. Ruben Flores faces a maximum sentence of three years in jail.

Their defense attorneys maintain their client’s innocence, arguing there is no proof Kristin is dead.

Prosecutors say evidence shows Paul killed Kristin and that her body was buried underneath the deck of his father’s Arroyo Grande home at some point before being dug up and moved.

While Kristin’s body has never been found, she was declared legally dead in 2002.

KSBY will have a crew at the Monterey County Courthouse in Salinas where the trial is being held awaiting the announcement that verdicts are in.

To be notified immediately when that happens, make sure to download the KSBY mobile app and have push notifications turned on.