James Stone, Casey Parsons’ father, speaks to media, custody hearing continues
The adoptive grandfather of Erica Lynn Parsons, the teenager who has been missing for two years, spoke with media Wednesday following a break in the custody hearing to determine if Erica’s adoptive parents will regain custody of their two youngest children.
Sandy and Casey Parsons were thrust into the spotlight after their biological son, James “Jamie” Parsons reported Erica, 15, missing. He told Rowan County Sheriff’s Office investigators on July 30 that he’d not seen his sister since November 2011.
Casey and Sandy maintain they allowed Erica to go live with a woman whom they knew as her biological grandmother, Irene “Nan” Goodman. The Parsonses met Goodman at a Mooresville restaurant, they said, and believed Erica was going with her to Asheville.
Investigators have said they can find no proof that Goodman exists, and other family members say she does not. The same week Jamie reported Erica missing, Rowan Social Services placed the two youngest children — Sadie and Toby — in the custody of Casey’s parents, Shirley and James Stone.
A teary-eyed James Stone told reporters Wednesday he hopes his daughter never gets her kids back.
He said Sandy and Casey were not “raising them right.”
He reportedly testified during the hearing Wednesday. He did not speak about the specifics of his testimony, but did share details of Erica’s interaction with Jamie.
He said Erica “was mean, and Jamie was always after her. We never suspected anything.”
Stone said Erica and Jamie were always fighting. He said, “she’d bring a lot of it on … but Jamie was mean, too.”
Family members have said they witnessed routine mental and physical abuse by Casey and Sandy against Erica.
Stone said he and his wife did not know anything about his daughter and the alleged abuse, but wishes they had “spotted it quicker.”
Shirley Stone said very little, but did mention the hearing was tough because it dealt with family.
District Court Judge Lillian Jordan closed the courtroom Tuesday to everyone except family and those involved to the case. The courtroom remained closed to unrelated parties on Wednesday.
Jamie spoke with media for the first time on Tuesday, the first day of the hearing, saying it was important for him to report Erica missing. He left the courthouse during a break walking arm-in-arm with his aunt, Tammy Gray, Casey’s sister.
Gray said she also hopes her sister and Sandy never regain custody of the youngest children.
Casey’s family aren’t the only people who hope the Parsonses never get their children back. Carolyn Parsons, Erica’s biological mother, says she’s kept up with what’s transpired over the course of the two days.
“I am so very, very proud of Jamie Parsons. If I could hug his neck and kiss him, I would. I am ecstatic that Tammy has stood her ground and said no she (Casey) doesn’t deserve those kids,” Carolyn said.
“I know it has got to be very hard, very emotional to testify against a mother, a sister, a daughter. I am very grateful for the family, even Casey’s family for standing up for Erica,” she said.
Carolyn said she hopes and prays that Casey and Sandy don’t regain custody and are not allowed to see them.
“I am even more disgusted that they have still not opened their mouths as to what they did with my child,” she said.
Carolyn said she just wants Erica to know she loves her and “I want her back safe and sound.”
No final decision was made following Wednesday’s hearing and it is expected to continue next month.
Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253.