Authorities release suicide notes left behind by Stephanie Parze’s killer

Authorities have released two suicide notes written by the man they say killed 25-year-old Freehold resident Stephanie Parze last year.

News 12 Staff

Feb 11, 2020, 12:22 AM

Updated 1,560 days ago

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Authorities have released two suicide notes written by the man they say killed 25-year-old Freehold resident Stephanie Parze last year.
John Ozbilgen wrote two notes before taking his life in November – one addressed to his family and one addressed to an unidentified ex-girlfriend.
Authorities say that Ozbilgen killed Parze in late October and disposed of her body in a wooded area in Old Bridge. Parze was last seen leaving a family gathering. Her body was not found until several months later.
Ozbilgen was considered a person of interest, but never formally charged in her murder. Authorities filed possession of child pornography charges against him after a search of his phone allegedly found disturbing images. But Ozbilgen was soon released from jail and hanged himself a short time later.
Ozbilgen’s notes, which were released by authorities on Monday, did not include any details about the murder or where Parze’s body was located. Parze is never mentioned by name. The note only refers to “the girl in the news.”
“The girl in the news with me was such a piece of [expletive]. She hurt me over and over when I was already at my lowest. She was a horrible person,” Ozbilgen wrote in the note to an ex-girlfriend.
Officials have redacted the ex-girlfriend’s name. Ozbilgen says that she was the best thing that ever happened to him. He also references a restraining order that the woman apparently had taken out against him.
“In that moment, I felt like my entire world ended. I really needed you in a huge way,” Ozbilgen wrote.
In the letter written to his family, Ozbilgen apologized for everything that was happening.
“I’ve been miserable for so long now, I had enough. Thanks for everything, I can’t do life in prison,” he said.
Ozbilgen went on to say that most of the things that they would hear about him were true, “except for the child porn.”
Ozbilgen mentions the unidentified ex-girlfriend again and asks his family to have her help plan his funeral. “I love her. She was so good to me. We had an amazing life. I [expletive] it up,” he wrote.
Ozbilgen’s family has maintained that he is innocent and said in a statement to the Asbury Park Press that he never mentioned hurting Parze in his notes.
"We believe he is innocent, but all the pressure from the false child pornography charges and the constant searches and relentlessness caused him to take his own life," they said in a statement provided to the newspaper by their attorney, Richard Incremona.
Parze’s family has previously stated that she also had a restraining order out against Ozbilgen. Authorities say that on the night Parze went missing, Ozbilgen sent her numerous angry messages.
Parze’s family says that they will start a foundation for battered women in her honor.


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