Cops Name Ex-Fiance Prime Suspect in Disappearance of Orlando Mom After Appearing on 'People's Court'

The ex-fiance of an Orlando mom has been named the prime suspect in the woman's disappearance after both appeared on a taped episode of "The People's Court" in a dispute over an engagement ring.

Michelle Parker was last seen dropping off her 3-year-old twins at ex-fiance Dale Smith Jr.'s home on Nov. 17, according to the woman's sister, Lauren Erickson.

Erickson said her brother received a suspicious text message from Parker's phone at 4:26 p.m. that same day, indicating she was in the Waterford area.

"She doesn't send one-word text messages," Erickson said.

On Saturday, the Orlando police department's swat team raided the home of Smith but Parker's brother, Dustin Erickson, told a local news station that police did not uncover any evidence during the raid.

Even so, Orlando police on Monday named Smith the prime suspect in the 33-year-old mother's disappearance.

She vanished the same day a taped episode of "The People's Court" aired featuring her and Smith, who is the father of the twins. They were in court over a dispute about a $5,000 engagement ring. Parker described a tumultuous relationship with Smith that at times she said became violent.

"He gets pretty malicious and vindictive," Parker said on the show, "and he's a mean person especially when he's been drinking."

"He shouldn't have put his hands on me and he shouldn't have put his hands on me prior. He shouldn't have left me three or four times over the past year and a half that we've been together," she said.

Erickson suggested that Dale was an unlikely suspect in her sister's disappearance but said "in my opinion, nobody is ruled out by any means."

"Who would want to hurt the mother of their children?" Erickson said. "I don't see how in any way he would benefit from it."

Parker's Hummer sport-utility vehicle was found abandoned a day later on the west side of Orlando, police officials said.

An attorney hired by Smith says his client is not guilty of any crime.

Mark NeJame said at a news conference Tuesday that Smith is asking for Texas Equusearch to search for missing 33-year-old Michelle Parker, provided Orlando authorities approve.

NeJame also says Smith is declining to take a lie detector test because it's unreliable and not because he is hiding anything.

The woman's mother, Yvonne Stewart, said on NBC's "Today" show last week that she believes her daughter, who is a well known bartender in the Orlando area, was kidnapped after being the victim of a random carjacking.

"I know in my heart of heart that she's been carjacked, that the people saw an expensive car and a girl who looks like she has money and I know they've made a mistake and I know that they want to fix this and I forgive them," Stewart said.

Parker is described as 5 foot, 6 inches tall with short, dark brown hair. Anyone with information on her disappearance is being urged to call the Orlando Police Department at (321) 235-5300.

Newscore contributed to this report.

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