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Ventura County

Search continues for missing ‘Glee’ actress in Lake Piru using sonar scanning systems

Ventura County Sheriff's Office

VENTURA COUNTY, Calif. - The Ventura County Sheriff's Office provided an update on the search for missing actress Naya Rivera at 3 p.m. Friday afternoon.

During the update, Ventura County Sheriff's Captain Eric Buschow explained that deputies, with assistance from LA County and Tulare County Sheriff's Offices, are continuing to search for Rivera in Lake Piru.

The search is being primarily focused on the north and east sides of the lake due to the location her boat was found and the direction of the wind.

Because of rough conditions, Capt. Buschow said visibility in the lake is around one to two feet, making it difficult for divers to locate objects in the deep water.

At this time, sonar scanning systems are being utlitized by search teams. These devices are towed behind boats and scan the bottom of the lake for any objects that might look like a body. When an object is detected, deputies deploy a remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) to get a close up look of the object.

Capt. Buschow said an ROV has been deployed a couple of times since Friday morning, however, Rivera's body still has not been located.

Rivera was reported missing on Wednesday after her rental boat was found floating on Lake Piru with only her four-year-old son sleeping inside.

Her son told investigators he and his mother had gone swimming, but she never returned to the boat.

A search quickly ensued, however, Rivera was not found along the shoreline or surface of the lake.

By 3 p.m. Thursday afternoon, the search for the actress was changed to a recovery mission meaning she is presumed to have died.

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Jessica Brest

Jessica Brest is a digital journalist and assignment editor for NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Jessica, click here.

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