The body found last week in Menands is that of missing Schenectady resident Denise Hart, police confirmed this afternoon.
Authorities used DNA to match the remains to the missing woman.
The investigation now turns to finding out who killed the 45-year-old nurse and mother of a 7-year-old child.
“My daughter has lost a mother,” Hart’s former husband, Robert Hart, said this afternoon. “My concern is that somebody out there needs to be caught.”
Robert Hart said he doesn’t intend to break the news to their daughter until Friday.
Detectives from Schenectady, Colonie, Menands and the state police are now conducting a joint investigation into Hart’s death.
But prosecution of her killer, when that person is found, will be done in Schenectady, Schenectady County District Attorney Robert Carney said. That decision was made after discussions with Albany County District Attorney P. David Soares.
Authorities believe she was killed in Schenectady County, though Carney declined to say whether they believe it happened inside her downtown Schenectady apartment.
Sources have said Hart’s mattress and bedding were missing when police arrived at her apartment.
Hart’s dismembered body was found April 1 wrapped in plastic in a wooded area behind an apartment building at 52 Clifford Road. The body was missing its head, hands and feet, delaying positive identification.
Hart, of Wade Lupe Apt. 86, was last seen alive Nov. 11.
She worked nights on Keyes Avenue at a group home there, state officials confirmed Thursday. Relatives reported her missing the last week in November.
Robert Hart said he has been in contact with the Schenectady Police detectives on the case, Jack Sims and Robert Buchanan. He said he has total confidence that they will solve the case.
Robert Hart said he met Denise about 11 years ago when both lived in Queens. They moved to Schenectady when their daughter was born, he said. The two had since separated.
“We wanted to raise our daughter in a place that was a little quieter,” he said.
He said his wife loved her job as a nurse. The job offered her the chance to help people.
“Denise was a very strong and intelligent person,” Hart said. “She was very full of life.
“Her daughter misses her.”
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