Inmate accused of killing alleged child molester said mom and God ‘told me to do it’

An inmate at Tarrant County jail charged with killing a notoriously accused child molester said Wednesday that “God and his mother” told him to kill the other man.

Jail officials said David Faustino Flores, 42, killed 76-year-old Clinton Don Simpson on Nov. 7 by slamming his head into the floor more than a dozen times.

Flores talked to reporters from jail on Wednesday afternoon, the same day he was formally charged with murder in the case, according to court records.

Flores told reporters he hears voices and when he first arrived in jail, he told jail officials he needed his own cell because he has schizophrenia.

“I told them I was schizophrenic and need my own cell because I can’t handle other people,” he said.

Flores said in the interview he was placed in solitary confinement, but was moved to suicide watch after he tried to kill himself. He showed reporters stitches on his head from where he hit it against a wall.

Flores was taken to the medical unit of the jail on suicidal prevention watch and put into a cell with Simpson, jail officials said.

Simpson, Flores said, would whisper things to him and gave him “the heebie-jeebies.”

“At that time I was already paranoid everyone wants to kill me,” he said. “I thought this whole place was ISIS.”

Flores said he hears the voices of his mother and God in his head and they told him to kill Simpson. His mother is dead.

“My mom said, ‘That’s Bin Laden, so you ought to go get him.’ So I went to wale on him . . . And God said, ‘Go ahead,’” he said.

According to the Sheriff’s Department, Flores hit Simpson on the left side of his head about 20 times and walked back to his bunk. When Simpson showed slight movement, Flores walked back over and hit him anther six times with a closed fist, and then 28 more times with a double fist as Simpson began to fall out of his wheelchair.

As Simpson fell out of the chair, Flores hit him five more times and grabbed his head to slam it into the floor 14 times, the affidavit says.

“I just kept hitting him,” he said.

During the interview, Flores asked if Simpson had died.

When told he had, Flores looked at the ground and was quiet for a moment.

“I didn’t mean to do it,” he said. “I shouldn’t have done it.”

He added that he didn’t know what Simpson had been accused of or why he was in jail.

Simpson was accused in 2007 of molesting 12 children — 11 girls and one boy — at “Mr. Don’s Whistle Stop,” a miniature train station and track, which, at that time, was operated and owned by Simpson in his back yard.

Flores’ brother, Brandon Flores, told the Star-Telegram that his brother has schizophrenia and hallucinations but had never been violent until October, when he was accused of hitting an elderly employee at a store.

Brandon Flores said he doesn’t believe his brother attacked Simpson because Simpson was an accused pedophile or because Simpson was elderly. He said he believes his brother’s mental condition made him vulnerable in jail and that he probably felt alone, only escalating his schizophrenia.

“I think it’s like putting a snake in with a spider, and you just want to see what happens,” Brandon Flores said in a previous interview. “I believe there’s some cruelty behind what happened to my brother.”

David Flores was in jail for the October assault. In the interview, he said he attacked the elderly employee because he was hearing voices and thought he was part of Al-Qaeda.

David McClelland, chief of staff for Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn, said in a telephone interview Monday that it wasn’t unusual for more than one inmate on suicide watch to be in a shared jail cell. He noted the cells on the jail’s medical wing, where the inmates were being housed, can hold up to four inmates on suicide watch.

Brandon Flores said he’s looking for a defense attorney who specializes in mental illness and will help defend his brother.

Simpson was in the Tarrant County jail after being found competent to stand trial on the molestation charges. For years, he’d been in state hospitals after being found incompetent. He was returned to Tarrant County in July.

A relative of Simpson’s who asked not to be identified said Thursday that the family had many questions and grave concerns about Simpson’s death. That same relative did not respond Monday to an email from the Star-Telegram seeking further comment.

Nichole Manna: 817-390-7684, @NicholeManna
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Kaley Johnson is a breaking news and enterprise reporter. She majored in investigative reporting at the University of Missouri-Columbia and has a passion for bringing readers in-depth, complex stories that will impact their lives. Send your tips via email or Twitter.
Nichole Manna is an investigative reporter for the Star-Telegram. Before moving to Fort Worth in July 2018, she covered crime and breaking news in Tennessee, North Carolina, Nebraska and Kansas. She is a 2012 graduate of Middle Tennessee State University and grew up in Florida.