Family attorney says polygraph test doesn't hurt Parsonses

Family attorney says polygraph test doesn't hurt Parsonses

Credit: NBC Charlotte

Family attorney says polygraph test doesn't hurt Parsonses

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by TONY BURBECK / NBC Charlotte

Bio | Email | Follow: @TonyWCNC

WCNC.com

Posted on August 21, 2013 at 7:45 PM

SALISBURY, N.C. -- Investigators hope a new picture leads to new clues about a missing Rowan County teen, while Erica Parsons’ family says it is done talking to the media.

Wednesday, neighbors are also buzzing about the results of a lie detector test given to Sandy Parsons, Erica's adoptive father, on the Dr. Phil show.

The results, according to the Dr. Phil show expert, were "strongly deceptive."

Sandy and Casey Parsons say they've done nothing wrong and did not harm Erica, who has been missing from the family home in Salisbury for nearly two years. 

The Parsons, through their attorney, say going on Dr. Phil accomplished their goal of getting Erica's story and picture out.

"She's gone from a little girl to a young woman," said Salisbury resident Josh Farmer, while looking at the age progression picture the Center for Missing and Exploited Children released Wednesday of what Erica would look like now at 15 years old.

"It just breaks my heart," said neighbor Deborah Bowman.

So too, neighbors say, seeing the results of a polygraph test given to Sandy on the Dr. Phil show, which included these two questions:

Did you deliberately cause Erica's disappearance?

Did you have a plan to cause Erica's disappearance?


The polygraph expert said Parsons' answers were deceptive - and that in his opinion - it was clear Sandy Parsons knew the meaning of the words he was asked.

"If you're dealing with a child that's missing, if you're a caring parent, the last thing that you are going to be is deceptive in any way," Farmer said.

The Dr. Phil Show says Erica's mother Casey did not take a polygraph because ongoing pain from recent surgery could impact the results.

Legally, polygraph tests are not usable in court in North Carolina.

"In the case of public opinion, it's going to look bad, but I can understand it from a legal perspective. But at the same time, this is your child," said Farmer.

Parsonses’ family attorney Carlyle Sherrill isn't commenting about the polygraph test results.

He doesn't think talking to Dr. Phil hurts Erica's parents.

"Hurt them in what way?" Sherrill said.  "There are no charges against them. What are they to be charged with? There's an investigation for a missing person. That's all."

Neighbors fear there's more - that someone isn't talking about.

"Two years - something is wrong," said neighbor Kim Alexander. "I hope it's not what my gut says."

The Parsons are due in juvenile court Thursday morning for a hearing to determine the if the couple's youngest kids were allegedly abused or neglected, and what the couple might have to do to get them out of DSS custody.

Investigators allege Erica was abused before she disappeared.

DSS removed two kids, a boy and girl, from the home after Erica was reported missing.

Nobody has been arrested or charged in Erica's disappearance.  The family says they've done nothing wrong and deny any abuse.

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