Law & Order: Special Victims Unit welcomes back two of Rollins’ past flames

Donal Logue
Donal Logue returns as Declan Murphy on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Season 23. Pic credit: NBC

Amanda Rollins is about to get two blasts from her past in the same episode. 

Donal Logue will be reprising his role as Declan Murphy in an upcoming Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Season 23 episode. 

Also, Ari’el Stachel will return as Sgt. Hasim Khaldun for what promises to be a big case that will have Rollins facing not one but two of her past romantic contacts. 

Who is Declan Murphy?

In Season 15 of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Rollins (Kelli Giddish) fell into a nasty gambling habit. In Gambler’s Fallacy, Rollins, finding herself deep in the hole, was blackmailed into aiding a mobster in covering up some crimes. 

Rollins was pushed by the mobster’s enforcer, Irish tough guy Declan O’Rourke (Donal Logue). At one point, it appeared that he forced Rollins into a sexual encounter to ensure her loyalty. 

When things went south, O’Rourke revealed he was actually Lieutenant Declan Murphy, an undercover cop. He helped Rollins get out of this mess and finally get help for her gambling problem. 

Murphy returned when Benson was targeted by escaped convict William Lewis and briefly took up command of the SVU division when Benson was accused of murdering the man. It was a brief command which he gave up as he had to leave for another undercover assignment.

Murphy made another appearance in Season 16, and in Season 17, it was revealed he and Rollins had a one-night stand, and Murphy was the father of Rollins’ first child. The pair seem to remain on good terms, but Murphy has been absent since. 

Why is Murphy returning and who’s with him?

Law & Order Rollins and Hasim Khaldun
Ari’el Stachel (with Kelli Giddish) returns as Hasim Khaldun on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Pic credit: NBC

Murphy isn’t alone in this episode as Ari’el Stachel’s Hasim Khaldun joins him. The NYPD transit cop debuted in Season 21’s I Deserve Some Loving Too, helping the team track a serial groper. He then aided them in busting an immigration officer behind several attacks.

Khaldun and Rollins hit it off in the midst of the case and even went out for dinner. That continued in the episode Dance, Lies and Video Tape. He last appeared in Season 22’s Welcome to the Pedo Motel, now with the homicide division and with no word on his relationship with Rollins. 

According to TV Line, Murphy has been busy with undercover assignments (Logue had been starring on Fox’s Gotham series) and needs the SVU team’s help with coordinated hate crimes. 

Naturally, having two of her past romances on the same case will affect Amanda, considering she just began a relationship with Carisi (Peter Scanavino). The fact Murphy and Carisi haven’t gotten along in the past (Murphy once punched Carisi as part of an undercover job) just adds to the tension. 

While there’s no date for the episode, this is certainly going to be a major challenge for Rollins to balance her romantic life with a tough case. 

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Season 23 returns with new episodes Thursday, December 9 at 10/9c on NBC. 

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