Law & Order: SVU veteran Richard Belzer is leaving the show after 15 seasons, TVGuide.com has confirmed.
Munch turned in his retirement papers in this week's episode of SVU, and will have a retirement party on the Oct. 16 episode. Belzer, whose character Det. John Munch has been on the show since it debuted, will likely make recurring guest appearances on the show, according to NBC.
"While there are no immediate plans for Belzer to return, the way Munch's storyline ends leaves the door open for him to work with the SVU squad in the future," an NBC spokesperson tells TVGuide.com.
Belzer originated the character on Homicide: Life on the Street in the early 1990s. He also appeared as Munch on episodes of The X-Files, Arrested Development, The Wire, Law & Order, and Law & Order: Trial By Jury.
Watch the promo for his goodbye now:
Are you sad that Munch is retiring?
View original Richard Belzer Leaving Law & Order: SVU at TVGuide.com