ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) - It began six years ago, July 30, 2013, when the adoptive brother of Erica Parsons walked into the Rowan Sheriff’s Office to report that the 15-year-old was missing from the family home on Miller Chapel Road in Rowan County.
He also mentioned that Erica didn’t just go missing recently, but that she hadn’t been seen in almost two years.
Six years later her adoptive parents are both serving federal prison sentences for fraud, while sitting in the Rowan County Detention Center awaiting trials for murder.
According to the murder indictment released when charges were filed in 2018, Casey Stone Parsons and Sandy Wade Parsons did “inflict serious bodily injury, broken and fractured bones which resulted in a permanent and protracted condition that causes extreme pain, on Erica Lynn Parsons, who was approximately 12 to 13 years old at the time.”
Erica Lynn Parsons was born in 1998. Two years later, her mother, Carolyn Parsons, allowed Erica to be adopted by family members Casey and Sandy Parsons, believing that couple could give Erica a better life than she was capable of providing.
The case has received national attention over the years and was the focus of an intense investigation that involved not only the Rowan Sheriff’s Office, but the SBI, FBI, and federal prosecutors who convicted Sandy and Casey Parsons of fraud.
The following is a timeline of the major events in the case over the past six years:
July 30, 2013: Jamie Parsons tells authorities that his adopted sister Erica hasn't been seen or heard from since November, 2011.
August 5, 2013: Rowan County Sheriff’s Office issues a missing child alert for Erica Lynn Parsons.
August 20, 21, 2013: Casey and Sandy Parsons appear on Dr. Phil Show. Sandy fails a lie detector test, Casey refuses to take the test.
July 30, 2014: Casey and Sandy Parsons charged with fraud for using federal adoption assistance money long after Erica disappeared.
October 1, 2014: Sandy Parsons pleads guilty to fraud, later sentenced to 8 years in prison.
October 27, 2014: Casey Parsons found guilty on fraud charges, later sentenced to 10 years in prison.
September 27, 2016: Sandy Parsons led investigators to a shallow grave in South Carolina where Erica’s remains were found.
February 25, 2017: Funeral held for Erica Parsons at First Baptist Church, Salisbury.
January 9, 2018: Autopsy reveals shocking injuries to body of Erica Parsons, saying death was caused by "homicidal violence."
February 20, 2018: Rowan Sheriff's Office and Rowan District Attorney announce murder and child abuse charges against Casey and Sandy Parsons.
April 12, 2018: Rowan County District Attorney announced prosecutors would seek the death penalty against Casey and Sandy Parsons.
February 14, 2019: A judge scheduled the trial for Casey Parsons to begin the week of April 6, 2020. Sandy, who was brought into the courtroom after Casey, did not receive a trial start date.
February 24, 2019: A special service is held by family members to mark what would have been the 21st birthday of Erica Parsons. The service was held at Erica’s grave site at West Lawn Memorial Park in China Grove.