Authorities are examining the remains to see if they are those of Megan DiPiazza

By People Staff
Updated January 19, 2016 01:30 PM
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Human remains believed to possibly be those of Megan DiPiazza, a California mother missing since 2012, were found by a hiker in Angeles National Forest this weekend. But police tell PEOPLE it may take several weeks before the remains can be identified.

The hiker spotted an automobile some 500 feet down a ravine on Sunday, Glendale police told the Los Angeles Times. It turned out to be DiPiazza’s car, and several of her personal effects, including a photo and credit cards, were found inside, police said.

Human remains were also discovered at the site. A Glendale police spokeswoman tells PEOPLE it is now a coroner’s case, and that identification of the remains “through dental records or DNA” could take more than a week or even up to a month.

DiPiazza, from La Crescenta, California, went missing in November 2012, about a month after she and her her husband separated, KCBS-TV reported at the time. Police said they found her purse and a goodbye note at her apartment.

DiPiazza’s husband said they had been arguing about their marriage on the day she went missing. “She took off and was a little upset. That’s the last I saw of her,” he said.

A week after she went missing, DiPiazza’s father, Bob Alexander, told the Los Angeles Daily News that his daughter had been depressed. “When you are separating from your husband, it’s not happy time,” he said.

From the beginning, DiPiazza’s disappearance was treated by police as a voluntary missing person’s case and not a crime.