A juror on the Ruben Flores case as part of the Kristin Smart murder trial was excused Thursday after word that the juror may have discussed the case with his priest. Reports indicate Monterey County Superior Court Judge Jennifer O’Keefe questioned the man in question about talking with his priest after hearing about the discussion from another juror. The man reportedly told the judge he did not discuss specifics but needed spiritual guidance and blessings due to the stress the case was causing him.
The judge dismissed the juror and will bring in an alternate. Ruben is the father of Paul Flores and is accused of helping his son hide the body of college student Kristin Smart, who disappeared from the Cal Poly campus back in May of 1996. Deliberations are starting back up Thursday after three days off this week while the court was out of session for previously scheduled conflicts.