The body of a 25-year-old New Jersey woman last seen in October was discovered in a wooded area of Middlesex County, officials said.
“It is with great sadness we announce that Stephanie Parze’s remains were recovered yesterday,” the Monmouth County prosecutor’s office said Monday on Twitter.
Parze, a nanny, was last seen about 10 p.m. Oct. 30 at her Freehold Township home. Her parents had said that she dropped them off at their home after a night out with family and then drove to her home, about 10 miles away, where she lived alone. They grew concerned after she did not show up for work.
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Her body was discovered Sunday near Route 9 in Old Bridge, about 20 minutes from her home.
An autopsy Monday morning confirmed her identity, according to the Monmouth County prosecutor’s office.
Investigators from multiple agencies searched areas in Freehold and Staten Island, where Parze’s ex-boyfriend, John Ozbilgen, once lived.
Ozbilgen, 29, died by suicide in November. He was found dead by his parents at their home in Freehold Township. He had been named a person of interest in Parze’s disappearance.
Days after her disappearance, authorities searched Ozbligen’s home and cellphone as part of their investigation and allegedly discovered images on his phone depicting acts of sexual violence on children, some as young as 2 years old, NBC New York reported.
Ozbilgen was arrested Nov. 8 on a child pornography charge. He had been released from jails days before he took his own life.
At his hearing, prosecutors said Ozbilgen was facing three domestic violence charges involving three women, NBC New York reported. His attorney, Robert Honecker, said Ozbilgen “strongly denied and maintained his innocence” in regard to the pornography charge and that at the time of his death, no charges relating to Parze’s disappearance were filed against him.
Parze’s family had organized searches since her disappearance.