NewsKristin Smart Case


Motion hearings continue in Paul, Ruben Flores murder trial

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Posted at 4:18 PM, Jul 07, 2022

Thursday marked day two of motion hearings in Monterey County this week for the trial of Paul and Ruben Flores.

Wednesday, multiple motions pertaining to certain pieces of evidence that would or would not be allowed to be admitted during the trial were heard ahead of opening statements set for July 18.

Paul and Ruben are both in court for the hearings, which could last into Friday.

Local defense attorney Ilan Funke-Biul says hearings like this are quite common.

“Depending on their merits and their substance or the motion, sometimes they're heard in the beginning of the trial, before the jury selection, and sometimes they're heard at the beginning of a trial after the jury selection,” Funke-Bilu said.

Paul Flores, a longtime person-of-interest in connection with the 1996 disappearance of Cal Poly freshman Kristin Smart from the Cal Poly campus, was arrested in April 2021 and charged with Smart’s murder.

His father, Ruben, is charged as an accessory, accused of helping hide Smart’s body, which has never been found.

The trial is taking place in Monterey County after a San Luis Obispo County Superior Court Judge ruled earlier this year he didn’t find it likely that the pair could receive a fair and impartial trial in the county where they were charged.

Paul and Ruben will be tried at the same time, but each have separate juries, which will rotate in and out of the courtroom depending on who is testifying.

Paul’s jury has been selected while Ruben’s will be picked next week.

The trial is expected to last into at least October.