Missing or Murdered: Where is 15-Year-Old Erica?

August 20, 2013
In a daytime exclusive, Dr. Phil sits down with the adoptive parents of 15-year-old Erica Parsons, who was last seen nearly two years ago but was only recently reported missing — by her brother. Casey and Sandy claim their daughter is alive and well and has been living with Irene “Nan” Goodman, a woman who they believe is Erica’s biological grandmother. So, where is Nan? And, why do these parents say they’re now being accused of murder? What really happened to Erica? 

More than 16 million kids in the United States are at risk for hunger each day. Fortunately, you can help. Visit Feeding America to find your local food bank. And, help Dr. Phil raise enough money for 10 million meals. Donate today!

Erica Lynn ParsonsErica Lynn ParsonsErica Lynn ParsonsSandy and Casey Parsons, Erica's adoptive parents
Erica Parsons, 15, was reported missing by her older brother on July 30, 2013, but he says the last time he saw her was on November 19, 2011. Erica’s adoptive parents, Sandy and Casey, say Erica isn’t missing — she went to live with her biological paternal grandmother, “Nan,” in December 2011. Police say there is no “Nan,” and Erica’s biological grandmother died five years ago. They say Erica’s parents are being uncooperative and that the information they’ve provided isn’t true. Sandy and Casey’s 20-year-old son told authorities that his sister isn’t missing — he claimed his parents killed her.

Casey and Sandy say they're telling the truth, they did not kill Erica, and all they're guilty of is wanting the best for their adopted daughter.

“She was a wonderful little girl.”

Casey says Nan knew a lot of information about their family and claimed to have gotten it all from Erica’s biological mother. After a few months of getting to know Nan online, they agreed that Erica could stay with her for a weekend. They say they met her at a McDonald’s and dropped Erica off. Casey admits that they didn’t know where Nan lived but claimed they saw photos of her house — a farm with horses. She says they no longer have those photos. She also says the phone number Nan gave them eventually became disconnected, and she no longer has that number, and Nan’s online social networking profile has since been deleted.
Dr. Phil points out that police believe Sandy and Casey fabricated Nan. Casey says Erica went to stay with Nan a few times and always came back happy, talking about the fun she had and the gifts they gave her. She says even family members heard Erica talking about her weekends with Nan.

Casey explains the last time she heard her daughter’s voice.

Erica’s biological mother speaks out. And, when Casey’s older daughter disappeared for a day, find out how she reacted.

Are Erica’s parents beginning to get worried about their daughter?

Casey says during the last handoff with Erica, there were two other women in the vehicle with Nan — Kelly, Erica’s half-sister by the same father, and “Strawberry,” Erica’s biological father’s girlfriend. She says they were both located and questioned by authorities, proving that they’re real people, and she’s not making up the story about Nan.

Hear what happened when Erica was 5 that perplexes Dr. Phil.

Casey says getting a lawyer caused them to lose their two young children, who were taken from them and placed in the care of her mother. Dr. Phil looks at the investigation report from the Department of Social Services and notes that they found nothing wrong in Sandy and Casey’s house, and there were no signs of abuse or neglect — except for the fact that Erica cannot be located.

“Do you wonder if maybe you were getting scammed?”

Dr. Phil addresses his audience. “I don’t know if Nan, Strawberry and Kelly are real people," he says. "If they are real, I certainly don’t want to even suggest that they had anything at all to do with Erica’s disappearance. But what I do want to do is have them reach out to us and let us know if they have any information that may help us find this precious little girl.”

If you have any information about missing 15-year-old Erica Lynn Parsons, please call the Rowan County Sheriff’s office at (704) 216-8700 or Lt. Chad Moose or Detective Clint Mauldin at (704) 216-8687. Erica has brown hair, brown eyes, fair complexion, 4 feet 5 inches tall, petite, 85 to 90 pounds and may be in the Asheville, North Carolina area.

Don’t miss Part 2!

Are Casey and Sandy Parsons guilty of hiding something sinister? Where is Erica? Will they agree to take a polygraph test? The discussion continues!