Naya Rivera died of accidental drowning, autopsy report confirms

Autopsy gave no initial indication that drugs or alcohol may have played a role

naya-rivera-ap Naya Rivera | AP

Glee actress Naya Rivera, whose body was recovered from Lake Piru in California on Tuesday, died of accidental drowning, officials confirmed. Her family released a statement honouring her ‘everlasting legacy and magnetic spirit’.

Her body showed no signs of traumatic injury or disease that might have contributed to the drowning, and gave no initial indication that drugs or alcohol may have played a role in her death, the Ventura County Medical Examiner said in a statement.

The creators of Glee also released a statement in tribute to Rivera Tuesday, announcing that they would be creating a college fund for her son and remembering her as a joyful and immensely talented performer.

Rivera was reported missing at Lake Piru in California earlier this week. Her four-year-old son was found alone and asleep on a rented boat on the lake. After her son was found, cops had focussed on recovering Rivera’s body as there was no hope of finding her alive.

In a statement released by police on July 8, a call came out at around 4:38 p.m. at Lake Piru, after a female adult and her child rented a boat for three-hour duration. Officials at the lake searched for the boat after they realized the boat had not been returned after three hours.

Rivera is known for her role as Santana Lopez on FOX television series Glee, which aired from 2009 to 2015.

She is the third major cast member from the show to die in their 30s. The confirmation of her death comes seven years to the day after co-star Cory Monteith died at 31 from a toxic mix of alcohol and heroin, with the series losing one of its leads while it was still on the air.

Another co-star, Mark Salling, who Rivera dated at one point, killed himself in 2018 at age 35 after pleading guilty to child pornography charges.

-with AP inputs