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
- Graceland's Serinda Swan Weighs In on Paige Hate, Unsexiest Sex Scene Ever
- Anthony Geary to General Hospital Fans: JK About That Retirement!
- Mindy Project Season 4 Twist: Mindy to Wed Big Bang Theory's Raj?!
- The CW Eyeing Dark Little Women Adaptation From NCIS Star
- Degrassi's Top 17 Couples, Ranked: Eclare vs. Fimogen and More
- More From TVLine
- Lena Dunham Gets a Running Coach: I Used to 'Run Like a Wounded Baby Pterodactyl'
- Source: Ben Affleck's Former Nanny 'Tipped Off the Paparazzi' About Los Angeles Rendezvous
- Britney Spears Flashes a Huge Smile While Doing a Perfect Split in a Tiny Bikini
- Mick Jagger's Son James Looks Just Like Him!
- Salma Hayek: Racism in America Is the 'Big Elephant in the Room'
- More From ET