Search captain involved in Naya Rivera’s recovery provides details on actress’ final moments


Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic(LOS ANGELES) — As Hollywood continues to come to grips with the tragic and unexpected passing of Naya Rivera, a Captain from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office is providing details about the recovery mission and the Glee star’s final moments.

Captain Jeremy Paris, part of the department’s aviation and search and rescue units, spoke with Entertainment Tonight about taking part in the search for Rivera’s body in Lake Piru.

He explained there are a few irrefutable facts regarding the 33-year-old’s accidental drowning.

“We know that she was out with her 4-year-old boy and she was swimming,” Paris began. “We know he was wearing a life vest and she wasn’t. We know that she was able to, and she did, assist him onto the boat. And then for some unknown reason — and I don’t think we will ever know — she was not able to get on the boat herself.”

Theories have sprung up about what caused Rivera’s drowning, such as a riptide or whirlpool taking the actress under — to which Paris says is impossible.

“There are currents — wind-driven currents — that really affect the surface of the water,” Paris explained. “So, we have factors of wind with the boat being pushed away from a swimmer, we have wave action that can cause that boat to bob up and down making it difficult to get on.”

He furthered. “Then we have underwater hazards that can, you know, snag feet underneath you, so that’s what I know kind of what the hazards are,” stressing the importance of always wearing a life vest.

Overall, he believes what happened was a tragedy.

Paris added that Rivera wasn’t being reckless for taking her son to Lake Piru because she frequented it as a child and simply wanted “to give her kid the same experience.”

By Megan StoneCopyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.