Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Local and federal investigators returned Tuesday to the Miller Chapel Road home where missing teen Erica Parsons lived with her adoptive parents until 2011.
This time, they brought dogs and used rods to probe the ground behind the house.
And for the second time in two days, the investigators searched the China Grove property of Erica’s adoptive grandfather, William Parsons.
Erica, 15, hasn’t been seen in Rowan County since November 2011 but was reported missing in July by her adoptive brother, James Parsons.
The Rowan County Sheriff’s Office has been looking into the teenager’s disappearance and has been assisted by the FBI and the North Carolina SBI.
Erica’s adoptive parents, Sandy and Casey Parsons have not been charged in her disappearance but have been the subject of a law enforcement investigation.
Investigators have not disclosed details about the searches, but did confirm they searched Monday on property behind William Parsons’ Sutton Road home in China Grove.
William Parsons is Sandy Parsons’ father.
Investigators did not say what they were looking for at the China Grove home on Monday.
“I can tell you the (Rowan County Sheriff’s Office) and the FBI are continuing our investigation to find Erica Parsons and that did involve a visit to William Parsons home yesterday. It is not in the best interest of our active investigation to release any details beyond that at this time,” Sheriff’s Office spokesman Capt. John Sifford wrote in an email.
William Parsons said the search Monday started just after noon. He said investigators asked to search a field behind his home and he gave consent.
He told investigators to “come and do what you want,” he said.
The search lasted about an hour, Parsons said.
“I did not know what they were looking for. I stayed in the house,” he said.
Parsons also said he doesn’t know if investigators found anything.
No search warrants have been filed, according to the Rowan County Clerk of Court’s Office. Because William Parsons gave consent to search his property, a warrant isn’t necessary.
He also gave investigators permission to search at the Miller Chapel Road home, which he also owns. Members of ISRCH, a group of independent search and rescue canine handlers, went to the Miller Chapel Road home Tuesday afternoon and stayed there about an hour.
Investigators used rods to probe the ground and a dog to search where an above-ground pool was once located as well as near a back patio.
This is the first time investigators have searched the Miller Chapel Road home with the aid of search and rescue dogs.
“The use of dogs is one of many investigative tools we are utilizing to find evidence pertaining to the Erica Parsons investigation. No additional details will be released to protect the integrity of an active investigation,” Sifford wrote in an email.
After leaving the Miller Chapel Road home Tuesday, investigators and the search and rescue team returned to William Parsons’ home, where, according to WBTV, several investigators walked in a field near a red storage building authorities searched two months ago.
In August, investigators got a search warrant to enter the storage shed that belonged to Sandy Parsons. They took a hammer, baby teeth, school records and pieces of vacuum equipment.
Sandy and Casey Parsons have said they allowed a then 13-year-old Erica to live with a woman they knew as her biological grandmother, Irene “Nan” Goodman. Investigators and other relatives have said Goodman does not exist.
The Parsonses now contend they were duped into believing Goodman was Erica’s biological grandmother.
Anyone with information about the disappearance of Erica Parsons is asked to contact investigators at the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office at 704-216-8700 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-639-5245.
Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253. Twitter: www.twitter.com/salpostpotts Facebook: www.facebook.com/Shavonne.SalisburyPost.