Fugitive Couple Arrested in Arizona 6 Months After Wife Allegedly Shot Coworker During Argument: US Marshals

Tangela Parker, 50, and husband Eric Parker, 62, were apprehended by U.S. Marshals Tuesday.
Tangela Parker, 50, and husband Eric Parker, 62, were apprehended by U.S. Marshals Tuesday.Police handout

Tangela Parker, 50, who is charged with first-degree murder, allegedly fled with her husband, Eric Parker, 60, after shooting her coworker Phelifia “Michelle” Marlow in January, federal authorities said.

A fugitive couple, who have allegedly been on the run since January, have reportedly spent the last several months working odd jobs, pan handling and even begging for money since fleeing from North Carolina. The pair were finally arrested Tuesday in Phoenix, Arizona by U.S. Marshals.

Tangela Parker, 50, is charged with first-degree murder and her husband Eric Parker, 62, is charged with being an accessory after the fact.

The pair are suspects in the death of Tangela’s coworker, Phelifia “Michelle” Marlow, a 51-year-old upholster who had been working at the TCS Designs furniture plant in Hickory, North Carolina when she was fatally shot on Jan. 13.

Marlow and her coworker Tangela had gotten into a “very silly” argument over moving tables in the work area just days before Marlow was killed, her husband Justin Marlow told the Hickory Daily Record shortly after her death.

Tangela, who Justin said had a reputation for being aggressive and argumentative, and had been bullying his wife, was sent home for three days after the argument, according to the Hickory Daily Record.

Marlow was shot to death “just a few days” later, the U.S. Marshals said in a statement.

“I have the constant question of why, but the why is not going to change anything,” Marlow’s 19-year-old daughter Makayla Marlow told the Hickory Daily Record.

Tangela and Eric have been on the run since, according to the U.S. Marshals.

Federal authorities investigated more than 30 leads over eight states, and say they soon discovered the pair had been living in Phoenix, Arizona, under the aliases Jason and Elizabeth Reardon.

The pair did not access their bank accounts since allegedly fleeing, but instead panhandled, begged, lived in their car for 11 weeks and worked odd jobs, including at a ranch, to survive, WSOC reported. They were able to change the tags on their beige 2019 Honda CRV and rented a room on Craigslist, according to WSOC, citing authorities.

Federal authorities eventually caught up to them after a tip led them to the home where they rented a room.

The pair appeared in an Arizona court hearing Wednesday, and will continue being held without bond until they are extradited to North Carolina.

“You feel like a weight has been lifted off your shoulders,” Makayla told WBTV of the Parkers’ arrest. “I always knew in the back of my mind this day coming.”

Related Stories