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Trial date set in Kristin Smart case, Paul & Ruben Flores enter “not guilty” pleas again

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - The trial in the Kristin Smart murder case will begin on April 25, 2022 a judge in San Luis Obispo announced Wednesday morning.

Paul Flores, 44, is charged with murder in the 1996 disappearance of Smart. His father, Ruben Flores, 80, is charged with accessory to murder after the fact.

Both men entered not guilty pleas at Wednesday brief arraignment hearing, which lasted about eight minutes.

In September, a marathon seven-week long preliminary hearing finally came to an end with Judge Craig von Rooyen deciding that prosecutors provided enough evidence for the case to go to trial.

While entering the not guilty plea on Wednesday, Paul Flores' defense attorney Robert Sanger said his client denies all allegations.

Sanger also announced he intends to file a 995 motion, which will ask the court to consider dismissing the case.

The motion will be filed sometime before Dec. 17, 2021, and will be heard at a separate hearing in early 2022.

Smart disappeared on May 25, 1996 after being seen leaving a college party in San Luis Obispo with Paul Flores. Her body has never been found.

Paul and Ruben Flores will next appear in court during a pre-trial status check on Dec. 6. The hearing will be held virtually on Zoom.


Playlist: The Disappearance of Kristin Smart

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Dave Alley

Dave Alley is a reporter and anchor at NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Dave, click here.

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Joe Buttitta

Joe Buttitta co-anchors the Morning News on NewsChannel 3-12 and NewsChannel 3 Midday. To learn more about Joe, click here

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