Every Law & Order Detective Across All Seasons

Sam Waterston has been joined by several exceptional investigators during Law & Order‘s 22 seasons.

Every Law & Order Detective Across All Seasons

With 22 seasons and another on the horizon, Law & Order has featured many legendary detectives throughout the years. While the ADAs handle the case in court, these detectives are often the ones on the frontlines. They throw everything they have into an investigation to ensure justice is served.

From Anthony Anderson to Chris Noth, Law & Order has been graced by some serious talent throughout its 22 seasons. Below, a comprehensive list of all the Law & Order detectives from Seasons 1-22.

Every Law & Order detective across all seasons

Sergeant Max Greevey (George Dzundza)

Season 1

Greevey was an officer for the NYPD’s 27th Precinct detective squad for 23 years, introduced during the series debut. Greevey’s best friend and commander was Captain Donald Cragen, a legendary face within many Law & Order spin-offs. Sadly, Greevey is murdered after a perp targets him to prevent his testimony from ever reaching court, cutting his time on the show too short.

Junior Detective Mike Logan (Chris Noth)

Seasons 1-5

Before the Cosmopolitans with Carrie Bradshaw, Noth played Mike Logan, one of the most tenacious investigators in the history of the 27th Precinct. Logan’s diligent police work was so effective that Cragen moved him around quite a bit throughout his many years within the squad.

Outside of Law & Order, Logan also worked on cases in Law & Order: Criminal Intent and was the focal point of Exiled: A Law & Order Movie after his hot-headed ways led to a temporary reassignment. After many years of service, Logan retired from the force in 2008.

Julianne Nicholson and Chris Noth standing over a body on an episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent.

Detective Megan Wheeler (Julianne Nicholson) and Detective Mike Logan (Chris Noth) from Season 6 Episode 22 of Law & Order: Criminal Intent. Photo: Will Hart/NBCU Photo Bank

Captain Donald Cragen (Dann Florek)

Seasons 1–3

Honest question: Where would the world be without the man, the myth, the Law & Order legend, Donald Cragen? Cragen retired in Season 15 of Law & Order: SVU after serving as the commanding officer of the 27th Precinct and Special Victims Unit for 25 years, making him one of the longest-running characters for the franchise. But Cragen is still a friendly face among the squads; Detective Elliot Stabler (Chris Meloni) has even caught up with Cragen a few times on Law & Order: Organized Crime while seeking his counsel.

Sergeant Phil Cerreta (Paul Sorvino)

Seasons 2–3

After Greevey’s tragic demise in Season 1, he is succeeded by Detective Phil Cerreta, a lovable officer who used his effortless charm and polite manners to crack cases. Logan initially struggled to like his new partner, but he and Cerreta quickly managed to settle their differences and get a groove going. Cerreta is unfortunately shot during a case, and while he survives the ordeal, the injury inspires him to transfer to a desk job in NYPD’s 110th Precinct.

Senior Detective Lennie Briscoe (Jerry Orbach)

Seasons 3–14

Lennie quickly became known for his deadpan sarcasm and non-stop wit, often making dark jokes while observing ghastly murder scenes. The wisecracker was loved by his many colleagues even after he decided to retire in 2004 after 30 years of police duty.

Lieutenant Anita Van Buren (S. Epatha Merkerson)

Seasons 4–20

Before she was running operations at Chicago Med as Sharon Goodwin, Merkerson played the beloved Law & Order Lieutenant Anita Van Buren for almost 20 years on the flagship series. Anita replaced Captain Cragen as the head of the 27th Precinct in 1993, later becoming one of the series’ longest-running characters.

Sharon Goodwin on Chicago Med

Photo: NBC

Junior Detective Rey Curtis (Benjamin Bratt)

Seasons 6–9

After Logan was transferred to Staten Island for assaulting a corrupt politician (the premise of the Law & Order movie), Curtis was introduced to the 27th Precinct as his replacement. Working closely with his partner, Briscoe, the smooth-talking Curtis investigated several nail-biting cases. After his wife was diagnosed with MS and passed away, Curtis decided to retire from the force early.

Senior Detective Ed Green (Jesse L. Martin)

Seasons 10–18

Green’s passion for getting the bad guy behind bars was palpable, but he retired after he became a suspect in an open murder case, which he learned was a self-defense case. Fun fact: Martin will return to his Law & Order roots in NBC’s new crime drama, The Irrational, debuting this fall.

Senior Detective Joe Fontana (Dennis Farina)

Seasons 15–16

Fontana was a member of the 27th Precinct for two years, replacing Briscoe as Ed Green’s partner in Season 15. Fontana often viewed the legal process as malleable; he bent the rules to see an investigation through and get his desired result.

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Junior Detective Nick Falco (Michael Imperioli)

Season 15

Falco may have only appeared as a detective on Law & Order for four episodes, but they were packed with action. After Green was shot in the line of duty, Falco is sent as his replacement while Green recuperated from his injuries. Most of Falco’s suspense came when he returned to the Precinct after being framed for a woman’s murder, leading his former colleagues to clear his name.

Junior Detective Nina Cassady (Milena Govich)

Season 17

Nina Cassady was the first female detective featured in the flagship Law & Order, introduced in Season 17 after being partnered with Green. Cassady was known as “Detective Beauty Queen” after getting press for being a part of a shootout at a beauty parlor, a nickname Anita wasn’t very fond of hearing. Anita was annoyed by Cassady’s inexperience, but she ultimately got the Precinct a lot of good press, leading her to stay until she departed at the end of the season.

Senior Detective Cyrus Lupo (Jeremy Sisto)

Seasons 18–20

Adding to the lineup of Green’s amazing partners throughout the years is the lovable detective Lupo. Lupo was a dedicated detective with an empathetic heart and open mind during cases. Lupo has a bit of a dark past, but he managed to twist it into a passionate career on the force, at one point even going to law school.


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Junior Detective Kevin Bernard (Anthony Anderson)

Senior Detective

Seasons 18–21

No one can deny that Anderson is a Law & Order fan favorite as the beloved Kevin Bernard, who had the honor of revamping the flagship series in 2020 alongside Sam Waterston’s DA Jack McCoy. After Green made the tough decision to retire, Bernard was introduced as his replacement as Lupo’s partner. In 2020, Bernard was partnered with Detective Frank Cosgrove and helped him find his footing within the new chapter of the Precinct, which benefited Cosgrove greatly.

Det. Kevin Bernard (Anthony Anderson), Wyatt Ackman (Patrick Heusinger), and Det. Frank Cosgrove (Jeffrey Donovan) appear in a scene from Law & Order.

Det. Kevin Bernard (Anthony Anderson), Wyatt Ackman (Patrick Heusinger), and Det. Frank Cosgrove (Jeffrey Donovan) appear in a scene from Law & Order, Season 21 Episode 9. Photo: Will Hart/NBC

Senior Detective Frank Cosgrove (Jeffrey Donovan)

Seasons 21–present

Cosgrove is the current Senior Detective for the 27th Precinct, working closely with DA McCoy and ADAs Nolan Price (Hugh Dancy) and Samantha Maroun (Odelya Halevi). Cosgrove is determined and passionate, but his eagerness to see justice served can often lead him to rub others the wrong way.

Lieutenant Kate Dixon (Camryn Manheim)

Seasons 21–present

Anita Van Buren left some big shoes to fill, but Lieutenant Kate Dixon was the perfect person for the gig. Dixon is the current commanding officer for the 27th Precinct, and she doesn’t leave much room for error in her territory. The no-nonsense boss’ insight is so valuable that she even made her way over to Law & Order: SVU to help with a Season 24 case.

Junior Detective Jalen Shaw (Mehcad Brooks)

Mehcad Brooks in the Law And Order Premiere Event

Photo: NBC

Seasons 22–present

The latest recruit to the 27th Precinct is Detective Jalen Shaw (Mehcad Brooks), a passionate officer who works closely with Cosgrove. Before his time on the force, Shaw graduated from NYU Law School and was a practicing lawyer for three years before learning he would be better suited elsewhere. The career change has turned out to be successful!

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