Suspect Arrested After Driving with Dead Body In Passenger Seat for Nearly 40 Miles: Cops

The man — who reportedly "smelled like a brewery" — allegedly told police he thought he hit an animal and kept driving, but the reality was far more disturbing.

A Texas man is behind bars after police found the body of a pedestrian he allegedly struck in the passenger seat of his car.

According to the White Settlement Police Department, 31-year-old Nestor Joel Lujan Flores fatally struck the pedestrian in Dallas on Saturday night, before driving nearly 38 miles to a restaurant parking lot in White Settlement.

A news release shared by police on Facebook Sunday, says Flores told police he believed he had hit an animal in Dallas and “continued driving to this parking lot.” The release added that “the driver never notified police or fire emergency responders of this incident.”

Police made the shocking discovery while responding to a welfare check from a caller at 11:13 p.m. Saturday, who reported that the driver of a Kia Forte appeared to be slumped over the steering wheel. According to the arrest affidavit, Flores also entered a Jack In the Box covered in blood asking for a phone charger. His vehicle was in the lot, with extensive damage to its front end, hood and windshield.

“The officer arrived and noticed what appeared to be a human body with no signs of life in the front passenger seat,” the release read. “The officer immediately had the driver step out of the vehicle and detained him for further investigation. Emergency fire department and medical personnel were called to the scene and determined that the passenger was deceased.”

Per Fox 4, citing the affidavit, the victim was found upside down in the vehicle, with the head facing toward the ground. Police also said the suspect “smelled like a brewery.”

While authorities were initially unsure of how and where the suspect struck the pedestrian, they said in the release that detectives “believe the impact was so severe, that the pedestrian was thrown inside the vehicle and came to rest on the passenger seat.”

The following morning, the White Settlement Police Department said in a separate Facebook release, that they worked overnight with other law enforcement agencies to determine the location of the crash, which they discovered was on a service road along Interstate 30 near Cockrell Hill Road in Dallas County.

“According to Dallas County Sheriff’s Office investigators, human remains were located near the roadway that may possibly match the victim’s body that was recovered from inside the vehicle in the restaurant parking lot,” the release said. “The Dallas County Medical Examiner’s Office will work with the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office to make proper identification of the decedent.”

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The Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office will also determine the pedestrian’s cause of death. The tests for Flores’ blood alcohol concentration are still being processed.

Flores remains in custody at White Settlement Jail on a pending charge of intoxication manslaughter. In 2021, he was convicted of driving while intoxicated in nearby Collin County.

It was also noted that White Settlement Police Department will transition the case to the Dallas County Sheriff’s Office for referral and prosecution in Dallas County.

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