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New evidence hearing date set in Kristin Smart murder case

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Posted at 9:11 AM, Jul 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-07 12:11:33-04

A new date has been set for the evidence hearing in the criminal case against the father and son charged in connection with the death of Cal Poly student Kristin Smart.

Paul Flores and his father, Ruben, are now set to appear for the in-person hearing in San Luis Obispo County Superior Court starting July 20.

The preliminary hearing is expected to last up to 12 days and will include discovery in the case and testimony from multiple witnesses.

The hearing was first set to begin Tuesday, July 6, but was delayed at the request of the defense last week. The judge says the defense is still waiting on requested search warrants and other documents from the district attorney's office related to the case.

San Luis Obispo County Superior Court Judge Craig van Rooyen said Tuesday that a Zoom hearing will take place July 12 to mainly discuss defense witnesses and then all parties will be in court July 14 where a motion to discuss an amended complaint will be heard.

The prosecution is expected to file the amended complaint by close of business Friday and the defense will have until the following Monday to file any opposition.

The preliminary hearing will also take place in the courtroom and not via Zoom. Van Rooyen has ruled that while the hearing can be filmed, audio cannot be recorded.

Paul, 44, and Ruben, 80, were arrested in April and charged in connection with Smart’s disappearance.

Paul, who attended Tuesday’s hearing via Zoom from jail, is charged with murder and is still in custody.

Ruben, who attended Tuesday’s hearing from the courthouse alongside his attorney, is charged with accessory after the fact and is currently out on bail.