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‘Glee’ Actress Naya Rivera Missing After Son Found Alone on a Boat in Ventura County, California

Glee actress Naya Rivera is missing after her 4-year-old son, Josey Hollis Dorsey, was found in a boat by himself on Wednesday, July 8, In Touch can confirm. On July 9, the official Twitter account for the sheriff’s office revealed that the search for Rivera is now a “recovery effort.”

The Ventura County Sheriff’s Department told In Touch the singer’s son was discovered alone on Lake Piru in Ventura County, California, in a boat his mother rented three hours earlier. Dorsey told investigators he and his mother went swimming, but Rivera, 33, never returned to the boat.

Naya Rivera and Son Josey
Matt Baron/Shutterstock

“At about 4 p.m., the 4-year-old boy was found by another boater, and he was by himself,” Ventura County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Captain Eric Buschow said, with Deputy Sheriff Chris Dyer later explaining to In Touch that the good samaritan works in the boat shop and found the vessel floating just 15 feet away from shore.

“That boater contacted rangers at the lake (hear 911 call here). We were notified and the search began. Helicopters immediately flew out with the dive team and put divers in the water where she was last seen,” Buschow continued. They suspended their search at 10:30 p.m. on July 8 until the morning of the 9th.

At that point, they announced the mission was considered a recovery rather than a rescue. “Investigators believe Rivera drowned in what appears to be a tragic accident,” Buschow said in a statement released later in the day. While the weather was “really nice” the day of the incident, and the boat was found close to shore, Dyer tells In Touch the “wind kicks up and it can get choppy” in the afternoons.

“The shore could be very treacherous. It’s not like you can just get out and walk up that shoreline,” he explained of Blue Point on the northern side of Lake Piru, where Rivera and her son were swimming.

The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office first tweeted about the incident on July 8. “[Happening] now: Search for possible drowning victim at Lake Piru. [Ventura County Air Unit and Fillmore Station Sheriff] on scene. [Search and Rescue] dive team and [public information officer] on the way,” they tweeted at 6:30 p.m. At 10:30 p.m., they added, “The missing person at Lake [Piru] has been identified as Naya Rivera, 33, of Los Angeles. SAR operation will continue at first light.”

Rivera welcomed son Josey with Ray Donovan actor Ryan Dorsey in 2015. The two actors previously dated and reconnected in 2014 after she and ex Big Sean called off their engagement. The parents tied the knot in July 2014, and the Devious Maids actress gave birth to their son just over a year later.

Naya Rivera and Son Josey Dorsey

In November 2016, Rivera and Dorsey, 36, announced their split in a joint statement. “After much consideration, we have made the decision to end our marriage,” they told People. “Our priority is and always will be our beautiful son that we share together. We will continue to be great co-parenting partners for him. We ask for respect and privacy for our family during this difficult time.”

A year later, they decided to give things another shot as Rivera filed a request to dismiss her divorce paperwork in October 2017. Just a month later, the TV star was arrested for domestic battery, and she filed for divorce once again in December 2017. According to The Blast, their divorce was finalized in January 2018 as the parents agreed to joint custody of Josey.

Representatives for Rivera have yet to respond to In Touch’s request for comment. Dorsey’s reps had no comment. Keep scrolling for more. 

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