Judge denies bail for man accused of murder
San Luis Obispo County prosecutors expect a long trial for the murder of Kristin Smart, alluding to substantial evidence during a bond hearing Monday afternoon.
Judge Craig B. Van Rooyen denied bail for Paul Flores, the man accused of the murder of Kristin Smart. Paul Flores, 44, also faces a charge of attempted rape.
The judge agreed to set a bond for Ruben Flores, 80, who was charged as an accessory after the fact to murder. The amount is to be determined after the judge looks at his assets Wednesday.
Both men previously pleaded not guilty.
Paul Flores’s attorney, Robert Sanger, wondered about if there was a sufficient amount of evidence prior to the arrest.
“I’m not commenting on the motivations of anybody or what’s in anyone’s mind, but I would say that it is somewhat unusual that there would be an arrest warrant at the same time as requests for search warrants, and not much new has appeared,” he said.
Later, prosecutor Christopher Peuvrelle revealed the county is recording substantial discoveries that he expects would take the defense “three months just to read all the reports.”
He expects a 12-day preliminary hearing for the trial of Paul Flores.
Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce Dudley told the News-Press that 12 days sounded long, though she does not know how much evidence prosecutors could have.
She was not surprised at the judge’s decisions on bond.
Because of a threat to public safety, the judge did not set a bond for Paul Flores, who also has multiple DUI convictions on his record.
Ruben Flores’s attorney Harold Mesick expressed concern for the health of the defendant, who recently had triple bypass surgery. Mr. Mesick described him as a “medical nightmare” for the jail’s staff.
Ruben Flores also has a clean record and does not possess a passport, which lessens risk of flight.
The attorneys plan to reconvene in a month to determine a date for a preliminary hearing.