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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Police searching for Naya Rivera say a body has been found in Lake Piru

A boat docked at Lake Piru on July 9
A boat docked at Lake Piru on July 9
Photo: Amy Sussman (Getty Images)

The Ventura County Sheriff’s Department—which has been the main force behind the search for Glee star Naya Rivera, who went missing at Lake Piru on July 9—say a body has been found at the Southern California lake. “The recovery is in progress,” reads a tweet from the VCSD. “A press conference will take place at 2 pm at the lake.”

Authorities have been looking for Rivera since her 4-year-old son, Josey, was found alone on the pontoon they had rented at Lake Piru on July 8. On the second day of searching, it was revealed that authorities believe Rivera “drowned in a tragic accident” and they transitioned from a “search and rescue mission” to a “recovery” mission. In the days since, the VCSD has led a team of over 100 divers and rescue personnel—including some from neighboring counties and the United States Coast Guard—in a search that has included the use of dogs, sonar, and other underwater technology. At a press conference July 10, VCSD Capt. Eric Buschow told reporters, “We don’t know if she’s going to be found five minutes from now or five days from now.”

In addition to searching the water, the VCD revealed Sunday that they were also searching nearby buildings. But later in the day, VCSD Sgt. Shannon King told People that “nothing came” of their cabin search:“They were just doing the shoreline to make sure nothing has changed. There were a lot of folks that were talking on social media about, ‘Oh, check the cabins. Maybe she’s there, maybe she’s hanging out,’” King says. She further explained that because they had “extra” search-and-rescue personnel on Sunday, they “did go to a couple of the cabins that were on the north end of the lake, that’s all that’s out there, and nothing came of it.”


Lake Piru is a body of water known as being dangerous. (According to the Los Angeles Times, about seven people drowned in the lake between 1994 and 2000.) At a July 9 press conference, Donoghue was upfront about the difficulties of searching its murky waters, where visibility can be less than a foot in front of a diver. “If the body is entangled in something underneath the water, it may never come up,” he said, adding that they “don’t know” if they’ll ever find Rivera. But that “does not change the efforts, and does not change the gusto, what we push forward with the search operation,” officer Chris Dyer explained at another press conference. “The goal is still to bring Ms. Rivera home to her family, so they can have some closure.”

A.V. Club Editor in Chief...but really just a She-Ra, Schitt’s Creek, Grey’s Anatomy, Survivor, Big Brother, Top Chef, The Good Place superfan.

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