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Kristin Good case: Jury choice in Paul Flores’ trial

Kristin Good vanished 26 years in the past after strolling again towards the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo dormitories from a celebration.

Now fellow scholar Paul Flores, final seen along with her that evening, will face a trial for her homicide starting Monday with jury choice in one in all California’s most well-known chilly instances.

Good’s disappearance and the next homicide investigation have haunted the Central Coast school neighborhood for many years, with billboards interesting for proof to convict her killer. Her physique has by no means been discovered. However San Luis Obispo County sheriff’s detectives, after years of searches and questioning, arrested Flores at his San Pedro residence final 12 months and his father, Ruben, at his Arroyo Grande residence. Ruben Flores is charged with an accent to the crime for alleged shifting the physique.

After deciding there was sufficient proof to strive Paul Flores for killing Good throughout a rape or tried rape in his dorm room, a San Luis Obispo choose ordered the trial be moved 126 miles north to Monterey County to make sure a good trial for the daddy and son. Paul Flores, 45, and Ruben Flores, 80, might be tried by separate juries, and people impaneled in every case received’t hear the identical proof. The testimony isn’t prone to get underway till subsequent month. The trial is predicted to final till October.

Some 1,520 Monterey County residents have obtained jury obligation summons. The choice course of started Monday on the courthouse in Salinas. The jury pool might be whittled right down to 40 jurors, together with alternates for the 2 trials. Monterey County Decide Jennifer O’Keefe, who at 44 is one 12 months youthful than Good would have been at the moment, final week declined the protection attorneys’ effort to dismiss the case for “outrageous authorities conduct.”

An intensive jury questionnaire is used to display screen jurors earlier than voir dire to finalize the juries and their alternates. Each side in every case will have the ability to use 10 preemptive strikes. When the juries make remaining choices, the verdicts might be introduced on the similar time. No video or recordings might be allowed through the proceedings.

Paul Flores was arrested in April 2021, almost 25 years after Good vanished. The 19-year-old was final seen strolling with him close to residence halls after attending a celebration within the early hours of Might 25, 1996. Each had been Cal Poly college students on the time. Whereas Good’s physique has by no means been discovered, she was legally declared useless in 2002.

In September, after listening to 22 days of testimony, the choose dominated there was sufficient proof for Paul and Ruben Flores to be tried. Prosecutors laid out a circumstantial case towards the pair.

In the course of the preliminary listening to, the prosecutor solicited testimony from witness Jennifer Hudson that Paul Flores admitted the crime to her in 1996.

“I’m executed enjoying along with her, and I put her out beneath my ramp,” Hudson testified that Flores instructed her. However she didn’t inform anybody of these phrases for years and solely knowledgeable the lead investigator within the case in 2019.

Good had handed out at a celebration for 2 hours in full view of many, and two mates had been holding her to stroll her residence when Flores “got here out of the darkness” and repeatedly instructed a type of mates that he would get her residence safely, Deputy Dist. Atty. Chris Peuvrelle has stated.

Peuvrelle elicited testimony that he stated exhibits Ruben Flores hid Good’s physique, ultimately shifting it after years of retaining a number of the stays beneath a deck at his Arroyo Grande residence.

A geologist testified that in one of many holes dug on the residence, there was an absence of consistency within the sandy soil and a “bathtub ring” alongside the facet of the wall, which she stated was a “good indication” of a human burial website whose contents had been later eliminated. One other skilled testified that fibers recovered additionally might be in line with the garments Good was final seen sporting.

However Paul Flores’ lawyer, Robert Sanger, stated these fibers might be pink development string. Earlier this month, the Monterey County choose dominated that two juries are required as a result of Paul Flores, throughout a June 19, 1996, interview with legislation enforcement, could have implicated Ruben Flores.

In the course of the preliminary listening to, Paul Flores’ ex-girlfriend, recognized as Angie Doe, stated she as soon as tried to choose an avocado from the yard at his father’s residence.

“I don’t keep in mind if it was Mr. [Paul] Flores or Ruben, however they redirected me away from the avocado bushes,” she stated. “They instructed me to come back round [the house] and get away from that space.” A renter of the house instructed the same story.

Sanger maintains “there was no constant concept” about the place Good’s physique went and no proof of what occurred to her. In the course of the preliminary listening to, Sanger stated {that a} former boyfriend had left burned sneakers on Good’s doorstep.

In the course of the listening to, prosecutors had a classmate testify that Paul Flores lied a few black eye he had claimed to have gotten in a basketball recreation. One other girl testified she noticed Flores hanging round Good’s dormitory although he claimed to have by no means been there.

Prosecutors additionally portrayed Flores as a serial predator who “has raped so many ladies, it’s arduous to maintain monitor.”

However on the preliminary listening to, the choose barred testimony about different allegations of sexual assaults and drugging of ladies and rejected a transfer so as to add rape costs from 2011 and 2017 involving two ladies in Los Angeles.

The prosecutor argued that there was a nexus to the homicide cost towards Flores as a result of, he stated, Flores had a historical past of raping ladies who had been intoxicated.

In the course of the trial, the protection will probably solid the lead detectives and an area true-crime podcast as focusing on Flores. In a current court docket movement to dismiss the case, Sanger argued that “disinformation” was “purposely disseminated” by San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Det. Clint Cole to an unnamed podcast.

The true-crime podcast “Your Personal Yard” has been credited by authorities with reviving curiosity within the Good case and serving to establish potential new witnesses and avenues of investigation.

Sanger, in looking for to dismiss the case, additionally challenged the conduct of the federal government and a search warrant it acquired for the cellphone of Flores’ mom, Susan Flores. That cellphone was taken after authorities alleged she recorded a relative of a witness.

Since his arrest, Paul Flores has been held whereas Ruben Flores is free on bail with an ankle monitoring machine. Paul Flores was transferred to the Monterey County jail because the choose heard 21 pretrial motions.

In a type of motions, the choose determined prosecutors may name Good a sufferer and Paul Flores and Ruben Flores as defendants.



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