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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A Dallas family is asking for prayers, as police investigate the discovery of human remains.

As it stands, police are not treating the discovery as just any unexplained death case. That’s because the remains, now at the Dallas County Medical Examiner’s Office, were found in the same area where people were conducting searches for Marisol Espinosa.

Espinosa is the mother of three who disappeared in December. She hasn’t been seen since leaving to go work at a hair salon in NorthPark Center.

Since her disappearance, Espinosa’s family has worked to keep the case in the public eye.

Police won’t say much about the discovery, until the medical examiner can identify the person and how they died. Dallas Police Department Major Max Geron explained, “We went down there for the obvious reason that if that is her, we wanted to have detectives there to make any observations that might prove relevant to the case.”

The body was discovered while Stephanie Timko and a group of animal activists were searching a remote section with a lot of dense brush and low-lying areas along Dowdy Ferry Road in Dallas County. They were looking for dead or injured animals, because the area is a common dumping ground.

Timko, who had her hair styled at the same salon where Espinosa worked, said the missing woman’s case has been on her mind and now that a discovery has been made she has mixed emotions. “We were really hoping that it wasn’t [Espinosa] and then at the same time hoping that it was… you know for her family,” she said. “It’s a very odd feeling. I would love for that family to get closure.”

Espinosa’s family shared the following statement on Facebook that said, in part:

“Thank you all to the kind hearted sincere genuine caring people for reaching out and sharing love, support and encouragement. The family has asked for prayers for her babies, her mom, her family and friends. Please respect this very difficult time as they wait.
Thank you; keep them in your prayers and for justice to prevail against evil. This is a very difficult time for the family. ”

While family members did not want to speak on camera, they said if the body does prove to be Marisol, they will be grateful for closure. If the body isn’t that of the missing mother they say they’ll continue their search efforts.

It could be a couple of days before the family learns that information. The Dallas County Medical Examiner does not expect to have an ID on Monday. Investigators said that, because of the decomposition of the body, an official report will take time.

Espinosa’s ex-boyfriend, Faustino Valdez, was the last person to have reported seeing Espinosa. He initially participated in searches for Espinosa, but then stopped. He hasn’t been seen in North Texas for months.

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