LOS ANGELES – US actor Mark Salling, known for his role in the television series “Glee” and who last October pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography, committed suicide on Tuesday in Los Angeles. He was 35.
A spokesman with the Los Angeles County medical examiner’s office confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter that the actor had hung himself, adding that the body was found about 9 am on the bank of a creek in Sunland, a neighborhood in northern Los Angeles.
Salling’s attorney Michael Proctor also confirmed to People magazine that the actor had died.
“I can confirm that Mark Salling passed away early this morning. Mark was a gentle and loving person, a person of great creativity, who was doing his best to atone for some serious mistakes and errors of judgment,” Proctor said in a statement
The TMZ celebrity news outlet reported Tuesday that authorities are investigating his death as a suicide while The Hollywood Reporter said that at present the cause of death is not apparent.
Los Angeles police confirmed to CBS that they had found a body in Tujunga, a neighborhood in northern Los Angeles, but they did not confirm that it was the artist’s.
Salling – born in Dallas, Texas, in 1982 – played the character of Noah “Puck” Puckerman in “Glee” for its six seasons from 2009-2015.
In October, the actor pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography and was facing between four and seven years behind bars.
As part of his agreement with prosecutors, Salling admitted downloading from the Internet thousands of child pornography files during several months in 2015.
His sentencing hearing had been scheduled for March 7.
Salling was arrested in December 2015 when investigators found more than 50,000 pornographic and erotic images of children and 600 videos with similar content in his home.
In 2013, Salling’s former girlfriend sued him for sexual battery, alleging that he had sexual relations with her without using a condom although she had requested that he do so. They reportedly settled the case for $2.7 million.
Salling is not the first actor connected with “Glee” to die tragically. Cory Monteith died of a drug overdose in 2013 at age 31.