‘Law & Order: SVU’: What Happened to Olivia Benson’s ‘Adopted’ Baby

by Megan Molseed

Longtime “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” fans know Olivia Benson’s journey to motherhood all too well. Fans of the hit NBC drama have followed Benson as she gained custody of her son, Noah. However, some eagle-eyed fans of the hit drama series have been recalling a moment when Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay) briefly became a caregiver to an infant. Only to watch the storyline vanish into thin air.

So, what did happen to this baby? And why is it never mentioned again after this episode?

What Happened To The Baby?

According to an article on Pajiba, and a recent “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” website post, the NBC website has stated that the premature infant died while undergoing one of the many operations it needed to have any hope of survival.

According to Pajiba, Olivia Benson was given a newborn baby during a “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” episode entitled “Savior.”

The Special Victims Unit team takes on a disturbing case in “Savior” where a killer is attacking sex workers and leaving deranged cards featuring prayers behind on the victims. One of the victims, played by Mischa Barton, narrowly survives an attack. The victim is now pregnant, and the team convinces her of the importance of testifying in the trial.

At the end of the episode, the witness gives birth to a premature baby. The newborn requires a lot of extra care. Feeling overwhelmed by the responsibility this newborn brings her, the new mother decides to give full custody to Olivia Benson. She then abandons the child at the hospital leaving Benson the message. This heartwrenching episode ends with Olivia preparing to make a decision on the newborn’s care.

What makes this storyline unique in the “Law and Order” universe is the fact that the child isn’t mentioned again. This is especially unusual in light of another storyline that soon follows. Not long after this episode, the “Law and Order” detective’s journey to motherhood becomes a core storyline in the series.

A Future Storyline, Perhaps?

The conclusion does seem to “fit” overall. Viewers knew the baby was ill and its chances of survival were very slim. Olivia being the sole provider for a helpless infant seems like a big deal. Especially considering it is eerily similar to how Olivia Benson eventually came to adopt her son, Noah.

Maybe just as an eagle-eyed fan found this episode, there’s another fan who remembers the topic being revisited. Or, maybe as the series progresses, we’ll hear more about this chapter in Olivia Benson’s life. One thing is for sure, no storyline is ever “officially” over in the “Law and Order” universe. Anything is fair game at any point.