By KAREN VELIE
The attorney for Paul Flores has requested a mistrial nine times, the latest over claims members of the prosecution team acted inappropriately in front of the jury.
On Monday afternoon, Paul Flores’ attorney Robert Sanger asked the judge to declare a mistrial because his private investigator saw five members of the prosecution team hugging members of Kristin Smart’s family. Sanger accused Deputy DA Christopher Peuvrelle, DA investigator James Camp, San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson and detective Clint Cole of the alleged inappropriate behavior.
Sanger voiced concern that the alleged hugging, which he called “extremely inappropriate,” could sway jurors to a guilty verdict.
Monterey County Superior Court Judge Jennifer O’Keefe did not agree, noting that she had already told the jury not to consider things happening outside the courtroom when making their decisions. O’Keefe then called the jury in and reminded them not to consider anything they see parties and witnesses do outside the courtroom.
Peuvrelle later informed the court that neither he nor Camp had hugged a member of the Smart family.
Sanger agreed, pointing out the expressions of support were given by Cole, Parkinson and the victim witness coordinator.