A missing town woman who has been the subject of a search since Oct. 12 was found dead in her car Wednesday.
Melanie Nasholts was found in her car by Colonie police behind a vacant business at 1893 Central Ave.
Police said that at this point no foul play is suspected in her death, but the investigation continues pending an autopsy and toxicology results. Both the Niskayuna and Colonie police departments are investigating the death.
Nasholts’ family spoke to The Daily Gazette on Wednesday before her body was discovered.
Family members said they knew something was wrong when Nasholts didn’t show up to pick up her identical twin sister at a bus stop on Oct. 12.
Cyierra Roldan, Nasholts’ niece, said she and her family had not stopped looking for Nasholts, 46, ever since. She was last seen leaving Childtime of Albany, where she worked as a preschool teacher, at around 2:30 p.m. on Oct. 12.
According to Niskayuna police Deputy Chief Michael Stevens, Nasholts drove a Kia Sportage.
Earlier on Wednesday, Stevens said police had not gotten much in the way of leads, except for some reported sightings that did not pan out. He said they also had been chasing down Nasholts’ phone records for any clues.
Roldan said Nasholts’ cellphone appeared to be off.
Nasholts worked both as a preschool teacher at Childtime and as a home health aide for an elderly woman, Roldan said.
“We knew something was really wrong because she takes her jobs very seriously,” Roldan said. “[Her employers] were asking where she was.”
Roldan said she didn’t go to work the week after Nasholts went missing, instead she spent day and night looking for her aunt.
The search expanded to cover most of the Capital Region, Roldan said, with people looking as far north as Lake George.
Nasholts grew up in Schenectady, Roldan said.
She said Nasholts didn’t move to Niskayuna until June, but family members had looked for her in places she would hang out when she was younger.
The family even organized a group search on Saturday that started in Central Park in Schenectady, an event to which the public was invited via Facebook.
Roldan said they also tried looking for her at Thacher Park in Voorheesville, one of the places Nasholts visited when she was younger.
They also looked through hotel parking lots, parking garages and areas near water. Nasholts had been entered into the nationwide missing persons database, according to Stevens. That means if any law enforcement agency runs her name through their system, she would come up as a missing person.
Roldan said the family was mentally exhausted from searching, but they have received a lot of support, both from within and outside the community.
A lot of people had been reaching out through Facebook, Roldan said, asking where they could look.