LITTLEROCK – Divers on Friday found a body, possibly that of a young man who recently went missing, in a car in the California Aqueduct in Littlerock.
A state Department of Water Resources crew reported Friday morning that they found damage to a fence along the aqueduct, then the California Highway Patrol was notified about a possible vehicle collision, according to CHP Officer Monique Mischeaux Breshers.
CHP officers responded and confirmed that a vehicle was inside the aqueduct near 106th Street East and Pearblossom Highway, Breshers said, then they notified the sheriff’s department’s dive team.
An orange Dodge Dart was found at the bottom of the waterway, and sheriff’s divers found the body of a Hispanic male, believed to be between 18 to 22 years old, inside the vehicle, Breshers told reporters at the scene.
Authorities did not positively identify the body on Friday, but family members and friends believed it to be Gustavo Santana, an 18-year-old Littlerock man who was recently reported missing.
Santana was last seen Sunday, Sept. 4, when he left his Littlerock home around 5 p.m. for work.
Santana was wearing his McDonald’s uniform and driving his orange Dodge Dart, according to a flyer his family posted to social media. Santana called his supervisor to say he was running late, but he never arrived to work. Family members then launched a desperate week-long search for the teen, whom they said suffered from seizures if medication was not taken.
Santana’s family planned to hold a vigil at the aqueduct Friday evening.