Naya Riviera was reported missing on Wednesday after her four-year-old son Josey was found alone on a boat on Lake Piru in Southern California.
On Monday morning the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department confirmed a body had been found in the lake and later that day confirmed it was the star actress.
A video posted by the Los Angeles Times showed officials confirming that the body found this afternoon was Naya.
Speaking to reporters, Captain Eric Buschow said: “This is an area we’ve been searching really hard because we believe that’s where she was last seen in the water.
“I don’t know what the depth is where she was found but I’ll have to get more details. This is all just happening now.”
At around 1 pm that day Naya had rented a pontoon to take her young son out on the waters of the national park.
A spokesperson for the Sheriff’s department said: “The son got back on the boat, his mom did not. He was wearing a life-vest, she was not.”
According to TMZ, her young son Josey haunting words to authorities were that his mother had “jumped into the water but didn’t come back up”.
After the actress’s disappearance was reported, a team involving helicopters, divers and drones were deployed to the lake to search for her.
Captain Eric Buschow, of the sheriff’s department, said: “There’s a lot of challenges in a reservoir this size, at times with visibility.”
He added: “We’re going on the belief that she did go in the water, and we’ve not been able to locate her. This may well be a case of drowning.
As night fell on Wednesday, the search was called off to resume at “first light” the following day.
After the search was suspended, more than 10,000 people signed a petition to urge authorities to keep looking.
Naya’s Mercedes G-Wagon was seen at the parking lot near where she hired the boat.
Naya became famous after she starred in Fox television series Glee, in which she played cheerleader Santana Lopez between 2009 and 2015.
On the back of her breakout role, Naya landed a recording contract with Columbia Records and released single Sorry in 2013 with rapper Big Sean.
Naya also has credits in several film roles including At the Devil’s Door.
In 2016 the talented thespian released her first memoir Sorry Not Sorry: Dreams, Mistakes and Growing Up.
After her disappearance was reported, many of her Glee stars took to social media to share their support.
Naya shared custody of her son Josey with her ex-husband Ryan Dorsey, who she divorced in 2018.