Erica Parsons’ adoptive mother says she believes the missing 15-year-old is likely OK and simply too scared to come forward because police are looking for her.
Casey Parsons and her husband, Sandy, spoke with reporters in their home Friday morning, with their attorney, Carlyle Sherrill, monitoring the conversations.
Erica has been gone since Nov. 19, 2011, but was reported missing by her older brother, James Parsons, on July 30. Investigators say that after initial conversations, the couple have been uncooperative and have not provided accurate information that would help them find the teen.
The State Bureau of Investigations and the FBI have joined the investigation.
Casey Parsons told reporters she let Erica leave their Salisbury home to live in Asheville with the girl’s paternal grandmother, Irene Goodman, whom she called Nan. The teen’s biological father, Casey said, is Billy Goodman, Irene’s son. The girl’s biological mother, Carolyn Parsons, was married to Sandy Parsons’ brother.
Casey said Erica visited Irene Goodman twice. The third time, she said, Erica called and said she wanted to stay with Goodman. Casey said she trusted Goodman.
When asked if she believes Erica is still in Asheville, Casey said she does believe the teen is with Goodman.
The couple have had no contact with Erica since around Christmas 2011, Casey said.
She said the family has searched for Erica via social networking site Facebook, but have never gone to Asheville or contacted Asheville law enforcement.
She believes Erica may be aware of the media attention this has brought upon the family and is just scared to say anything. The Rowan County Department of Social Services has removed the two youngest children from the home.
Casey said Erica’s home life was turbulent because of the violent behavior of older brother James. Erica told her mother once James yelled a lot, but never harmed her. He was charged with harming Casey Parsons and his other siblings.
Carolyn Parsons, Erica’s birth mother, lives out of state now. Reached by telephone, Carolyn Parsons said she’s scheduled to meet with local authorities Monday and has been told not to comment until then.
“What I will say is that I am very concerned about her,” Carolyn Parsons said. “I do love her. I do care about her. I always have, and I always will, and I want her returned safe.”
The couple, along with Sherrill, have been invited on the Dr. Phil show. The episode is expected to tape Monday.
See more details in Saturday’s Post.