Two people, including a child, were confirmed dead and one individual was reported missing after a private airplane crashed into the Gulf of Mexico on Saturday (December 3) night, the Associated Press reports.
A search in relation to the crash was launched in Venice, Florida, just after 10:00 a.m. on Sunday (December 4) following an inquiry by the Federal Aviation Administration to the Venice Municipal Airport regarding the single-engine Piper Cherokee plane, which was overdue to return to an airport in St. Petersburg, Florida, at the time.
The body of a woman was located floating west of the Venice shore at around the same time of the search's launch, city of Venice spokesperson Lorraine Anderson confirmed in a statement obtained by the AP.
Wreckage of the rented plane was located by Sarasota County Sheriff's Office divers directly west of Venice Municipal Airport at about a third of a mile offshore at around 2:00 p.m., according to Anderson.
A deceased girl was located by rescuers inside the passenger area of the plane.
A man believed the be the pilot or a passenger was believed to still be missing as of Sunday, according to Anderson.
The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office, U.S. Coast Guard, Sarasota Police Department, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the District 12 Medical Examiner's Office and the National Transportation Safety Board all assisted in the investigation into the plane crash, Anderson confirmed.