Former “Glee” actor Mark Salling, facing sentencing in March on a child pornography conviction, was found dead Tuesday from a suspected suicide, his lawyer said.
Salling, 35, was discovered in a park area in the Sunland section of Los Angeles, near his home.
Sources said Salling was found hanging from a tree about six hours after police received a report he was missing.
“He was pronounced dead at the scene around 9 a.m.,” Los Angeles County Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter said. “An autopsy is pending. The body is with us. There was no note that I know of, but the investigation is ongoing.”
Under the terms of his plea deal, he was set to serve four to seven years in jail for possessing pornographic images of prepubescent minors on his personal computer.
“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,” his lawyer Michael Proctor said in a statement.
“He is survived by his mother and father, and his brother. The Salling family appreciates the support they have been receiving and asks for their privacy to be respected,” Proctor said.
“Defendant attempted to conceal his activity by using software that masked his IP address,” his plea agreement said. “However, on at least two occasions in 2015, defendant showed his child pornography to an adult woman in the context of their sexual relationship. This was ultimately reported to law enforcement.”
Salling played the Mohawk-wearing bad boy Noah (Puck) Puckerman during “Glee’s” highly successful six-season run.
Puck was a football-playing high school jock who ended up joining a glee club with one of his teammates, Finn Hudson, played by Cory Monteith.
Monteith died in 2013 at age 31 from a combination of alcohol and heroin, officials said.
After his arrest for child pornography, Salling was fired from his starring role in the mini-series “Adi Shankar’s Gods and Secrets.”
He was last seen Monday night and was reported to be depressed, according to an emergency dispatch audio reported by TheBlast.com.