NewsKristin Smart Case


Pre-trial hearings wrap up in Paul, Ruben Flores murder trial

Jury selection is set to begin June 13
Paul, Ruben 6-7.JPG
Posted at 4:47 PM, Jun 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-07 23:51:31-04

Tuesday marked the second and what turned out to be final day of pre-trial hearings in the murder case against Paul and Ruben Flores.

In the morning, more motions from both sides were heard by Monterey County Superior Court Judge Jennifer O’Keefe.

She ruled on some, including that Kristin Smart can be referred to as a victim and Paul Flores can be referred to as a defendant during the trial, and said she would decide on others at a later date.

The pre-trial hearings were expected to last through the week but court officials announced Tuesday afternoon that the rest had been vacated.

As a result, jury selection was moved up and will now begin June 13.

More than 1,500 potential jurors will be screened with 12 jurors and eight alternates chosen for each defendant. During the trial, each jury will alternate locations in the courtroom weekly. The jurors from each pool will be ordered to remain separate and secluded from the other.

Paul is charged with murder in connection with the 1996 disappearance of Cal Poly student Kristin Smart. His father, Ruben, is charged as an accessory.

Opening statements are set to take place July 6 in Salinas.

The judge has denied audio and video recording of these hearings and the upcoming trial but is allowing still photography.