Jury begins deliberating fate of defendant Paul Flores in Kristin Smart murder trial

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After hearing 11 weeks of evidence and a set of fiery closing arguments, jurors on Tuesday began deliberating whether to convict Paul Flores for the 1996 murder of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo student Kristin Smart.

“Paul Flores murdered her and buried her under his father’s deck. It is that simple,” San Luis Obispo County Deputy Dist. Atty. Chris Peuvrelle said in his closing arguments in a Salinas courtroom.

Flores’ attorney, Robert Sanger, finished his closing arguments by telling jurors that “there is no evidence of a murder — so that is really the end of it.”

Smart was 19 when she vanished 26 years ago after walking toward the dormitories with Flores. Her body has never been found, but she was legally declared dead in 2002.

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