Demore Barnes is headed back to Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.
The actor is set to reprise his role as former Deputy Chief Christian Garland in an upcoming episode of the Dick Wolf procedural, Give Me My Remote reports.
Barnes joined the series in Season 21, replacing Peter Gallagher’s William Dodds as Deputy Chief, and was upgraded to series regular in Season 22. (He has credited costar Mariska Hargitay with “spearheading my shift to series regular.”)
The actor departed SVU in the second half of the Season 23 premiere, titled “Never Turn Your Back On Them.” During the hour, Garland quit his job after being ostracized by Chief McGrath for speaking up about police misconduct during a controversial case. McGrath temporarily took over as SVU’s commanding officer following Garland’s resignation.
Barnes previously opened up about his exit from the show in an Instagram message to fans, saying “I don’t totally know why this has happened.”
He added that he was “so very proud to have played the first Black deputy chief in SVU history” and called on fans to amplify diverse storytelling.
“I hope that Wolf Entertainment’s leadership in giving me opportunity to amplify vital voice and story will result in many studios continuing to open doors of opportunity for others to do the same. This must continue,” he urged. “So please… continue to do your part to support change and amplify the voices and stories that injustice, in its many forms, seeks to silence.”
How do you feel about Demore Barnes’ return to Law & Order: SVU? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.