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What happened to Vanessa Rojas on the Chicago P.D. cast?

Rojas And Atwater Chicago PD
The character of Vanessa Rojas debuted on Season 7 of Chicago P.D. Pic credit: Matt Dinerstein/NBCUniversal

The Chicago P.D. cast has quietly shifted from a character who just got introduced last season, and her replacement will debut very soon in Season 8.

Actress Lisseth Chavez popped up as an undercover cop during a case that Intelligence was working on in Season 7. She came on because actor Jon Seda (he played Detective Antonio Dawson) was leaving the program.

Over the years, there have been quite a few casting changes at Chicago P.D., with the most notable one being the exit of Sophia Bush (she had played Detective Erin Lindsay since the premiere).

Chavez burst onto the scene as Officer Vanessa Rojas (and alias Maria Lopez) during the Season 7 episode titled Assets.

She was soon invited to join the Intelligence Unit and was involved in some big cases for the team.

What happened to Vanessa Rojas on the Chicago P.D. cast?

Actress Lisseth Chavez was not brought back for Chicago P.D. Season 8 and it is unclear if it was a mutual decision or if one side decided that it was time to move on.

Chavez now has a role on CW’s Legends of Tomorrow (Esperanza “Spooner” Cruz), so she still has a job within the industry.

Prior to coming to Chicago P.D., Chavez played the recurring character Ximena Sinfuego on The Fosters and had also popped up on episodes of Grey’s Anatomy, Station 19, The OA, S.W.A.T., and Murder in the First.

In regard to the character of Vanessa Rojas, her exit has not yet been addressed by the Chicago P.D. writers. Much of the first two episodes of the season focused on the battle Kevin Atwater (LaRoyce Hawkins) has been fighting against people within the department.

It’s possible that her exit won’t get addressed, and that when her replacement shows up to work with the Intelligence Unit, the show moves on as though the character never actually appeared.

Who is replacing Vanessa Rojas on the Intelligence Unit?

Actor Cleveland Berto has joined the Chicago P.D. cast and he will make his debut during upcoming episodes of Season 8. His character (Officer Jalen Walker) has been described as someone who goes by the book, so he is basically the opposite of Rojas.

It’s unclear when his first episode will air on NBC, but we are looking forward to seeing what Berto can do with his new role. The Intelligence Unit isn’t exactly a group that follows all the rules, so he could end up at odds with some of the other characters.

The Chicago P.D. winter premiere is also coming up quickly, so we are finally going to get to see Season 8, Episode 3.

Chicago P.D. airs Wednesdays at 10/9c on NBC.

Ryan DeVault


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