‘Law & Order: SVU’ Promotes Velasco Actor Octavio Pisano To Series Regular

by Anna Dunn
(Photo by Matt Doyle/Getty Images)

Law & Order: SVU has promoted Velasco actor Octavio Pisano to a series regular. The new announcement comes after the exit of two series regulars in the season premiere.  Joe Velasco is a former undercover cop and a detective working for McGrath. McGrath, played by Terry Serpico, has appeared in the majority of episodes so far this season.

Pisano’s promotion to a regular on Law & Order: SVU comes after the exit of Kat actress Jamie Hyder and Garland actor Demore Barnes. He joins Mariska Hargitay, Ice-T, Peter Scanavino, and Kelli Giddish. Pisano is known for his work on Coyote, If Loving You is Wrong, Badsville, Smartass, and Ms. Purple.

He’s joining a season that’ll happen to celebrate its 500th episode very soon, which is an absolute landmark event. It’s quite the time to join a show, as it’s already been on air for so many years.

Both ‘Law & Order: SVU’ Actors Who Left Implied Leaving the Show was Not their Decision

The actress who played Kat was only on the show for a couple of years, but fans were shocked and upset when they learned that she would only appear in the premiere episode before heading out. Law & Order: SVU actress Jamie Gray Hyder responded to the news in an Instagram post about leaving the show.

“Kat’s out of the bag. It’s with a heavy heart that I confirm Kat’s departure from the squad room. The decision was made above my paygrade, and wouldn’t have been my choice, but hey – That’s showbiz for ya,” despite leaving before she wanted, Hyder expressed gratitude for the time she had.

“Thank you to the SVUniverse for welcoming me with open arms. It’s been an experience that I have grown from greatly, and will never forget,” she wrote.

Demore Barnes, meanwhile, felt similarly. In a post made once the premiere episode aired, Barnes took to Instagram as well to express his confusion.

“While I know you were happy that I was here, and that I’m happy that I was here, I also know you’re sad and surprised and I am too,” Barnes told his fans. “I don’t totally know why this happened. I hope that Wolf Entertainment’s leadership, in giving me opportunity amplify vital voice and story, will result in many studios continuing to open doors of opportunities for others to do the same.”

Pisano Joins an Experienced Cast

Now, with the addition of Octavio Pisano to the full-time cast, fans are still trying to make sense of the move. Of course, it’s not a lack of excitement for Pisano, it’s confusion over what happened with the two characters they were just starting to get to know and really love.

If you want to catch Pisano joining the team on Law & Order: SVU, you can tune in to NBC every Thursday night at 9/8 central. Following Law & Order: SVU, you can check in with Elliot Stabler on Law & Order: Organized Crime.