On Wednesday night (May 25), NBC aired Part Two of “Law & Order: SVU’s” Season 17 finale episode entitled, “Heartfelt Passages.” By the show’s end, a beloved team member was gone forever.

Digging deeper into the rape conviction of Rikers corrections officer Gary Munson (Brad Garrett), things quickly went awry when Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and Mike Dodds (Andy Karl) attempted to remove Mrs. Munson (Karina Logue) and their children from the house.

mike dodds Law & Order: SVU Season 17 finale: Benson suffers an unexpected loss

In response, Munson held his wife and Dodds as hostages. In an attempt to talk him down, Dodds is able to save Mrs. Munson’s life, taking a bullet in the process. “This is on me,” Benson tearfully tells her fellow officers. Neither one checked for weapons in the house beforehand.

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Things were touch and go in the hospital, and for a moment it seemed that Dodds was going to pull through. His father, Chief Deputy William Dodds (Peter Gallagher) remained abnormally upbeat throughout the whole ordeal. But then Mike suffers a massive stroke and is left in a vegetative state, his father loses it. It’s a gut wrenching scene to watch as he explains that they will have to pull the plug.

The SVU team is devastated by the loss. “He wanted to be like his father,” Benson says. “A hero.”

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'Law and Order SVU' finale

Benson finds herself back in therapy visiting Dr. Peter Lindstrom (Bill Irwin) afterwards, still reeling with guilt. But in the end, it’s Ed Tucker (Robert John Burke) that is able to lift her spirits. Taking a break in Paris, with her son and lover in tow, it looks like everyone’s favorite detective will soon be ready to come back for another season of kicking butt.

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