SALISBURY, North Carolina — A pair of adoptive parents who went on Dr. Phil pleading for help finding their missing daughter who disappeared in 2011 have been charged with killing her, authorities said.
Casey and Sandy Parsons, who are already in prison for tax fraud, were indicted by a North Carolina grand jury in the slaying of their 13-year-old daughter, Erica Parsons.
Her dismembered body was found in a shallow grave in September 016 in South Carolina, five years after she vanished. Already in prison, adoptive dad Sandy Parsons had shown investigators where he buried the child shortly before Christmas in 2011.
The teen had lived with her adoptive parents in Rowan County from 2000 until the time of her disappearance, police said.
The couple have been charged with first-degree murder, child abuse, concealment of death and obstruction of justice..
Forensic experts say the girl appeared to have endured numerous beatings, malnourishment and abuse over the years, according to the Charlotte Observer.
She was not even reported missing until 2013, when the couple went on “Dr. Phil” McGraw’s national TV show to plead for help in finding her.
Sandy Parsons admitted he locked Erica in a closet, beat her “with belt buckle” and bent her fingers back and choked her, according to the Observer.
Both continued to collect adoption benefits after Erica’s disappearance and were convicted of tax fraud in 2014.