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Preliminary hearing scheduled in Kristin Smart Case

Lauren Walike
Paul Flores appeared in court from San Luis Obispo County Jail and his father, Ruben Flores, appeared virtually from his attorney's office.

Paul and Ruben Flores appeared over Zoom in San Luis Obispo Superior court May 17 to confirm future hearing dates in the 1996 disappearance of Cal Poly freshman Kristin Smart.

Judge Craig van Rooyen said a pre-preliminary hearing for both men will take place June 21st and a preliminary hearing will be on July 6.

Deputy District Attorney Christopher Peuvrelle, who is leading the prosecution, says the July 6 preliminary hearing will take 12 full days.

At that time, Judge van Rooyen will decide whether the prosecution has probable cause to justify the charges in the case.

Paul Flores is being charged with Smart’s murder and Ruben Flores is being charged with accessory to murder.

Judge van Rooyen said previously that the preliminary hearing would include testimony and evidence.

Peuvrelle said the prosecution has and is continuing to discover “substantial material.”

“There is going to be additional discovery as the investigation is ongoing and we will provide it as soon as we get it,” Peuvrelle said.

Judge van Rooyen said if the July 6 preliminary hearing goes beyond 14 days, the court will take a waiver of continuous preliminary hearings because he will be out the last week of July.

Both Paul and Ruben Flores pleaded not guilty for their charges at their April 19 arraignment.

The next time both men will appear in court is for a pre-preliminary hearing scheduled for June 21.

Lauren Walike joined KCBX as its news manager in February 2021. In addition to her KCBX work, Lauren also serves as news director for KCPR-FM, Cal Poly’s student-run radio station, and digital director of Mustang Media Group, Cal Poly’s student-run news organization. She will graduate from Cal Poly’s Honors Program in June 2021 with a Bachelor of Science in journalism with minors in Integrated Marketing Communications and Media Arts, Society and Technology.
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