Mom charged in kids’ murders arrested

Suzanna Brown Simpson

PICKENS — Suzanna Brown Simpson, the Dacusville mother accused of shooting and killing her children and trying to kill her husband last week, was taken into police custody Monday upon her release from Greenville Memorial Hospital.

Simpson, who had been hospitalized following a single-vehicle accident shortly before her children and husband were found shot on the morning of May 14, was released into the custody of Pickens County Sheriff’s Office deputies at about 4:30 p.m. Monday.

Simpson, 35, of 307 Cherokee Trail, faces two murder charges in the deaths of her children, 7-year-old Carly Ashelyn Simpson and 5-year-old Sawyer Russell Simpson, an attempted murder charge in the shooting of her husband, Michael John Simpson, 34, and one charge of possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime.

An arraignment hearing scheduled for Tuesday morning was canceled, according to Pickens County Chief Deputy Creed Hashe, after Pickens County Magistrate Ben Dow received a formal request from the public defender’s office asking that the hearing be waived.

An investigation into the single-vehicle accident that injured Simpson led to the discovery of the shooting victims May 14.

According to 911 calls released by the PCSO on Thursday, a neighbor was the first to respond to the accident, which happened a very short distance from the Cherokee Trail home.

The neighbor told a dispatcher that the driver of a pickup truck had driven over some trees and run off the road into a ditch. He said the driver didn’t know where she was or who she was and had been knocked unconscious.

In a second call, the neighbor gave the first indication that there was more to the case than a simple accident, telling the dispatcher “something’s not right here.”

“The lady that wrecked is my neighbor, and I’ve never seen her this early in the morning,” he said. “Her husband’s truck and the other car is still in the yard. I can’t get her husband or kids to the door. She’s got two little kids, like 5 and 7.

“Something’s not right, and she can’t tell me because she don’t know. She’s talking away. She don’t know what’s going on, but we need somebody here to check this house.”

After medical officials and deputies arrived at the scene of the accident, deputies visited the Simpson home, finding the children shot dead in their beds and the father in serious condition with at least one gunshot wound to the head.

According to warrants, officers said Simpson told EMS personnel “OK, OK, I shot my whole family.”

The warrants also said the suspect was transported to Greenville Memorial Hospital, where she told an ER nurse, “I shot my kids, then my husband and tried to shoot myself several times, but couldn’t do it.”

The scene of the crime is less than a quarter of a mile from Dacusville Elementary School, where both children were students.