ROWAN COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - The Rowan County Sheriff's Office says new charges could be coming against the adoptive parents of Erica Parsons in light of Tuesday's autopsy release. However, they say, the charges may have to wait until another unrelated murder trial wraps up.
The autopsy states Erica's cause of death was "homicidal violence of undetermined means." The coroner wrote "we cannot exclude the possibility of a terminal blunt force injury, suffocation or strangulation."
The autopsy also states that Erica suffered multiple blunt force injuries over a prolonged period of time and suffered from malnourishment and possible infections or poisonings.
Erica was adopted by Sandy and Casey Parsons when she was two-years-old. She was reported missing from Rowan County in July of 2013 by her adoptive brother, Jamie Parsons, but had reportedly not been seen since November 2011.
Erica would have been 13 years old when she was reported missing.
In October 2016, Sandy Parsons led investigators to her skeletal remains in Chesterfield County, SC. He and Casey were at the time - and still are - behind bars, convicted in 2015 of defrauding the government by continuing to accept federal adoption assistance money long after Erica was gone from the family home.
No charges have been filed in Erica's death. But that could soon change, according to Rowan County Sheriff's Office Captain John Sifford.
Sifford wrote in a press release Tuesday afternoon that the sheriff's office received the autopsy results at the same time media outlets did with "no other notification, phone call, or email to additional staff."
He said Rowan County District Attorney Brandi Cook and 1st Lt. Chad Moose - who would be involved in the filing of any possible charges against the Parsons - are currently "actively involved in the Court Trial of defendant Marlene Johnson, who is charged with Murder in a completely unrelated investigation."
Sifford went on to write, "With both suspects still being in Federal Prison, further charges will most likely be forthcoming after the conclusion of the current Murder Trial that is unfolding in The Rowan County Superior Court."
Sandy and Casey Parsons were sentenced in March 2015 to serve a combined total of 18 years in prison.
Sandy was sentenced to 96 months in prison, three years supervised release, $14,062 in restitution, and a special assessment of $4,300. Casey was sentenced to 120 months in prison, three years supervised release, $41,814.00 in restitution, and a special assessment of $1,500.
The judge called Casey Parsons "morally bankrupt" and said she had a "depraved mind." He also described Sandy Parsons as having a "twisted mind" before handing down their sentences.
"I have sentenced thousands of people over the years," the judge told the couple during sentencing, "But no case I've ever had is as disturbing as this one."
During the course of the years-long investigation and fraud trial Jamie Parsons - along with other alleged witnesses - told investigators that Erica was abused during her stay with Sandy and Casey by himself and multiple family members.
The autopsy released Tuesday seems to confirm some of those details.