'Law & Order: SVU': Philip Winchester Exiting After Season 20

The actor has been part of the NBC drama for the past two seasons after first playing his character on 'Chicago Justice.'
Peter Kramer/NBC
Philip Winchester on 'SVU'

Law & Order: SVU will enter its historic 21st season down a castmember.

Philip Winchester announced on Twitter on Friday, shortly after NBC renewed the series, that he won't be returning for 2019-20. He has played Assistant District Attorney Peter Stone — the son of original Law & Order prosecutor Ben Stone (Michael Moriarty) — for the past two seasons. He'll appear in the final four episodes of the season.

"Sadly for me, Peter Stone and his 'the facts don't care about your feelings' attitude will not be returning," Winchester wrote on Twitter. "A huge tip of the hat to my amazing fans and not so big fans. You ALL make me work harder. Thank you! See you on the next adventure."

NBC declined to comment.

Winchester first played Peter Stone on SVU creator Dick Wolf's Chicago Justice, part of the mega-producer's Windy City franchise, which shares continuity with the Law & Order series. When Chicago Justice was canceled in 2017, Winchester moved to SVU midway through its 19th season.

With the renewal for season 21, Law & Order: SVU will become the longest-running live-action primetime series in American TV history, surpassing parent show Law & Order (1990-2010) and CBS' Gunsmoke (1955-75).

No other cast changes are expected at this time. Mariska Hargitay will continue her role as Lt. Olivia Benson, joined by regulars Ice T, Kelli Giddish and Peter Scanavino.