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Updated on Jul 17, 2020. Posted on Jul 13, 2020

Naya Rivera's "Glee" Costars Have Broken Their Silence On Her Disappearance After Receiving Backlash From Fans

"No one owes anyone online a performance of grief."

Naya Rivera's Glee costars are speaking out on Twitter after they were criticised for not publicly acknowledging her disappearance.

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Last Wednesday, Naya was reported missing after her 4-year-old son, Josey, was found alone on a rented pontoon boat in Lake Piru.

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Josey was found asleep and wearing a lifejacket by another boater on the lake. The 4-year-old was reported to have told investigators that Naya went swimming in the water but "did not come back up" to the boat.

In a press conference, the captain of the Ventura County Sheriff's Department, Eric Buschow, said there was "no evidence of foul play". 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."

On Thursday, the search for Naya was transitioned to a "recovery operation" after it was revealed that investigators believe the actor drowned in a "tragic accident".

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Over the weekend, it was reported that the search for Naya would continue "at least through Tuesday" but that no decision had been made past then.

"There's no talk of either one way or the other after Tuesday," Sgt. Shannon King told People on Sunday. "Tuesday's sort of the projected date that we're discussing, and we're going to continue doing what we have been doing."

Following Naya's disappearance, many people offered prayers and messages of hope on social media, including former costars Heather Morris and Harry Shum Jr, as well as Demi Lovato.

But other Glee cast members have been criticised recently for not publicly acknowledging Naya's disappearance, something which Amber Riley responded to over the weekend.

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"Show some respect," Amber tweeted on Sunday. "All our energy is going toward helping find Naya and praying for her safe return and for her family. No one owes anyone online a performance of grief."

#helpfindnaya #NayaRivera #nayariveramissing

She added: "This is very real and devastating. Focus on Naya and her family. Not us. We don't matter right now."

Kevin McHale, who played Artie on Glee, echoed Amber's message, asking people to respect the privacy of Naya's family and to "refrain from judging" the people who haven't spoken out on social media.

I cannot begin to understand what Naya’s family must be feeling. I know the rest of us are completely shattered, but not without hope. Please respect her family & their privacy in this moment. Please refrain from judging those who don’t show their pain on social media. ♥️ https://t.co/DXsUj3qdCh

This follows reports that Lea Michele deactivated her Twitter account on Saturday after apparently being harassed and subjected to abusive tweets for not speaking out about the disappearance.

Rodin Eckenroth / Getty Images

Before Naya's disappearance, Lea had remained silent on social media after being called out for her behaviour on the set of Glee by costar Samantha Marie Ware. Lea hadn't been present on social media since posting an apology following the controversy.

BuzzFeed has reached out to reps of Lea Michele for comment.

Ben Henry is a celebrity reporter for BuzzFeed UK and is based in London.

Contact Ben Henry at ben.henry@buzzfeed.com.

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