After spending 15-years as Capt. Donald Cragen of the Special Victim's Unit actor Dann Florek will be leaving the long running NBC drama. On Friday Florek filmed what would be his final 'Law and Order.' Taking to Twitter Florek let his fans know that he was leaving "SVU" saying, "Friday was the last day [for] Cragen/Florek. It was a sweet send off! But he'll live on in syndication land [forever]!" Florek's departure from the show comes two months after fans said good bye to another "SVU" favorite, Richard Belzer's detective Munch.

"Law and Order: SVU" showrunner Warren Leight told TV Guide about Florek's departure back in October. "Cragen knows at some point in the season or by the end of the season he will have hit mandatory retirement so he'll have to figure out when that moment is. We're playing that anxiety that the Captain is leaving at some point," Leight said. Dann Florek has been a large part of the "Law and Order" franchise since his time as the orginal Captain on the flagship show, "Law and Order." The series debuted in 1990 and Florek spent three-years as Cragen but was let go.

In 1998 Florek appeared in the "Law and Order" film "Exiled" and was a part of the "SVU" cast since the show debuted in 1999. The most obvious successor to Cragen would be Sgt. Olivia Benson played by Mariska Hargitay. Leight said that fans should not expect to see Hargitay in that role. It will likely be a new character taking over as the leader of the SVU detectives. "If someone does come in, what are the odds that an outsider is going to come in as captain and know more about sex crimes than these guys? Leight said.

Bringing in a fresh captain who does not have the same experience as the rest of the detectives is one way of creating friction within the squad. "It's always annoying to take orders from somebody who doesn't know what they're doing and doesn't know the world as well as you do. Although, with that comes some fresh perspective," Leight told TV Guide. "Law and order: SVU" airs Wednesday nights on NBC. The show's next new episode will air on January 8.

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