Cast departures and changes within the 'Law & Order' franchise are are a dime a dozen these days. So much so that most fans tend not to notice when they occur. The exception is when a long-running cast member decides to step down. Fans take notice then because, frankly, there aren't too many more long-running cast members left in the franchise (except the amazingly stable group at 'Special Victims Unit.'
This time the honor goes to S. Epatha Merkerson, who plays Lieutenant Van Buren in the original 'Law & Order'. After 16 years, the actress has decided to leave the series at the end of this season.
TV Squad Hot Topics
Most Popular Articles
From Our Partners
- 'Project Runway' Season 13: Ranking the Top Looks of 'Finale, Part 2'
- 'The 100' Episode 2.2 Photos: Octavia Confronts the Grounders
- 'Constantine' Cast in Other Roles
- 'Sons of Anarchy' Episode 7.8 Photos: Jax Meets Up With Jury
- 'Parenthood' Recap: Crosby's Downward Spiral and Amber's Date
- More From BuddyTV
- Did Boardwalk Hit Casting Jackpot? Missing DemonDean? Can Elsa Bundle Up? Palicki-est TV Week? And More Qs!
- Degrassi Sneak Peek: Drew Confronts a Pregnant Clare on Season Premiere
- Lauren Graham Lands Odd Couple Gig as Matthew Perry's Ex-Wife
- Ratings: Reign, ABC Dramas Tick Up; Bad Judge, A to Z Slip; Football Pops
- TLC Cancels Here Comes Honey Boo Boo
- More From TVLine
- Kelly Osbourne Gets Tattoo In Memory of Joan Rivers
- 'Here Comes Honey Boo Boo' Canceled, Mama June Thanks Fans
- Jenny McCarthy on Sex with Donnie Wahlberg: It Gets Better Every Time
- Aaron Paul Slams Toys 'R' Us for Pulling 'Breaking Bad' Action Figures and Keeping Barbie
- Lamar Odom Won't Sign Khloe Kardashian Divorce Papers
- More From ET