STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

UPDATE: Bodies, Vehicle Recovered From Missing California Family

The body of Siddhant Thottapilly, the remaining missing member of the Thottapilly family, has been found.

Posted: Apr 16, 2018 9:18 AM
Updated: Apr 16, 2018 8:10 PM

UPDATE: According to the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office, water searchers located the body of a juvenile male submerged in the Eel River approximately 6 miles north of the reported crash site (down stream). The body was found around 4:00 PM.

Once the body was recovered it was identified as being Siddhant Thottapilly, the remaining missing member of the Thottapilly family.


An autopsy is expected to be performed this week as part of the Coroner's investigation into the incident.

UPDATE: Search and rescue divers have located the submerged vehicle of the Thottapilly family about a half mile north of the crash site, according to Mendocino County Sheriff's Department (MCSD).

After partially pulling the SUV from the Eel River, rescuers were able to identify the bodies of 41-year-old Sandeep Thottapilly (the family's father) and 9-year-old Saachi Thottapilly (daughter), both still inside the vehicle.

38-year-old Siddhant Thottapilly (mother) was recovered on the riverbank and later identified last week. 12-year-old Siddhant (son) remains missing.

Rescuers in a boat found the vehicle after noticing a gasoline smell coming from the water, downstream from the suspected crash site. Autopsies are expected to be performed this week, according to MCSD.

(Updated as of 9:16 a.m. on Monday, April 16)



UPDATE: 
The latest from Mendocino County Sheriff's Department (MCSD) reveals that a body found near the suspected crash site of the Thottapilly family was one of an adult woman (not a child, as previously reported by the Associated Press). She was found about seven miles north of where the crash was reported.

The body was found lying on 'exposed terrain,' formerly covered by the swollen Eel River after several days of heavy rain, according to MCSD.

Investigators have not yet officially confirmed the identity of the body—and an autopsy will not be conducted until April 17, according to MCSD.

Search and rescue teams will continue to comb the area for the missing faily members and their vehicle, which has not yet been found and is still believed to be submerged somewhere in the Eel River.

(Updated as of 4:27 p.m. on Friday, April 13)



UPDATE (AP): Sheriff confirms that the body of a child has been found in the Northern California river that a family's SUV plunged into last week.

This is a developing story and we will be updating as more details emerge.

(Updated as of 1:00 p.m. on Friday, April 13)



LEGGETT, Calif. (AP) — Recovered vehicle debris and personal items confirm that an SUV seen plunging into a storm-swollen Northern California river belonged to a family that disappeared last week, authorities said Thursday.

The vehicle itself and the four members of the Thottapilly family have not been recovered from the Eel River, which remains too dangerous for divers to enter, but searchers along the banks located numerous items consistent with a Honda vehicle body and interior, and items consistent with a family traveling on vacation, the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office said in a statement.

"Several items have been positively identified, by family members, as belonging to the Thottapilly family," it said. "These items were of a personal nature and will not be described further at this time, but it does confirm the fact the vehicle that was seen going into the river was that of the Thottapilly family."

The family from Santa Clarita in northern Los Angeles County was last heard from while driving along northwestern California's redwood coast. The family was traveling home from Portland, Oregon, and was reported missing April 8 by a relative in San Jose who had expected them to arrive for a visit by April 6.

The family members were identified as Sandeep Thottapilly, 41; Soumya Thottapilly, 38; Siddhant Thottapilly, 12; and Saachi Thottapilly, 9.

The family was traveling as a strong storm dumped rain on Northern California.

Before the family was known to be missing, authorities in Mendocino County received reports that a vehicle southbound on U.S. 101 went off the highway and tumbled into the Eel River. The vehicle had submerged by the time rescuers arrived.

"The Mendocino County Sheriff's Office has been in contact with numerous other county dive teams and technical rescue responders that can be called upon, when the vehicle is located, to assist with recovery of the vehicle," the office said. "Once recovered the Highway Patrol will conduct a complete mechanical inspection of the vehicle as part of the accident investigation.

Farther south along the Mendocino County coast, authorities continue to look for members of a family missing since an SUV made a deadly and possibly intentional plunge off a towering ocean bluff along State Route 1 last month.

Sarah and Jennifer Hart and their six adopted children were believed to be in the family's SUV at the time. Five bodies were found March 26 near Mendocino, a few days after Washington state authorities began investigating the Harts for possible child neglect, but three of their children were not immediately recovered from the scene along the shoreline.

A body was pulled out of the surf last weekend but its identity was not immediately identified.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 43793

Reported Deaths: 673
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah9502166
Marion6024109
Washington599178
Umatilla343545
Clackamas326766
Lane246727
Malheur194938
Jackson17967
Deschutes118513
Yamhill101315
Linn84515
Polk66815
Jefferson60710
Morrow5517
Lincoln51813
Union4842
Benton4636
Klamath4223
Douglas3688
Wasco34916
Hood River2841
Columbia2711
Josephine2703
Coos2601
Clatsop2480
Baker1403
Crook1132
Tillamook740
Curry581
Wallowa492
Lake430
Harney350
Sherman200
Grant120
Gilliam110
Wheeler10
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 923648

Reported Deaths: 17559
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles3050707044
Riverside675521306
San Bernardino641311073
Orange594421468
San Diego55898885
Kern34114420
Fresno31195439
Sacramento25882499
Santa Clara24665404
Alameda23636463
San Joaquin21988492
Contra Costa18877243
Stanislaus17814400
Tulare17730291
Ventura14409166
Imperial13023338
San Francisco12277145
Monterey1153892
San Mateo11278159
Santa Barbara9886126
Sonoma9601136
Merced9588155
Kings848683
Solano758676
Marin7107127
Madera506676
Placer429059
San Luis Obispo424032
Yolo325060
Butte313453
Santa Cruz284825
Shasta199931
Napa199816
Sutter188912
San Benito144915
El Dorado13684
Yuba133810
Mendocino115421
Tehama9219
Lassen7711
Lake70216
Glenn6793
Nevada6328
Humboldt56910
Colusa5536
Calaveras34721
Amador33716
Tuolumne2855
Inyo24015
Siskiyou2140
Mono1822
Del Norte1801
Mariposa812
Plumas760
Modoc450
Trinity280
Sierra60
Alpine40
Unassigned00
Medford
Clear
37° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 37°
Brookings
Clear
45° wxIcon
Hi: 66° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 45°
Crater Lake
Clear
22° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 29°
Feels Like: 22°
Grants Pass
Clear
32° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 32°
Klamath Falls
Clear
22° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 22°
Cooler & breezy Friday
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events