The following is what Hickory Police Chief Tom Adkins said during the presser Friday afternoon:
"It is with great regret that I stand before you today, I have been dreading this moment [since] early on this investigation.
"We have recovered enough physical evidence to believe we have found Zahra, I cannot get into specific about the investigation.
"The DNA evidence from the bone found on Christy Road matches a DNA sample from the house at 21st Avenue NW. The DNA sample was taken from personal items belonging to Zahra.
"A DNA profile will be created from cheek swabs from her biological mother and father for a biological profile.
"The remains found in Caldwell County have been sent to the medical examiner's office and SBI for positive identification.
"According to medical examiner's staff on site when the remains were recovered, they are consistent with a child.
"Until the test is complete, we cannot officially confirm they are Zahra.
"The timetable for those results are not available at this time.
"This is still a developing case and we are still gathering all the facts in this case.
"We must be cautious in releasing further information so we do not jeopardize the criminal investigation.
"Investigators, agents and officers and staff who worked on this case, are devastated…
(Chief briefly paused and sniffed.)
"…that we were not able to find Zahra and bring her home safely.
"We appreciate the support we received from the public.
"Today our community mourns, our state mourns, our nation mourns and the world mourns as we go forward."