“Law & Order: SVU” Actor and Comedian Richard Belzer Has Died

Comedian and Actor Richard Belzer, best known and loved for his role as Detective John Munch on NBC’s “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” had died,  He was 78.

Belzer, who starred in several TV Series over the years,  started his career as a standup comedian. He once was the opener for “Saturday Night Live.”

Universal Television and NBC issued a joint statement Sunday “Anyone who ever had the pleasure of watching Richard Belzer portray Det. John Munch — whether on ‘Homicide’ or ‘Law & Order: SVU’ – over four decades will never forget how much he inhabited that beloved character to make it his own,” the statement said.

Mariska Hargitay, who portrays Det. Olivia Benson, said on her Instagram Sunday that she loved Belzer, “now and forever.”

Ice-T who joined the show as Sergeant Odafin “Fin” Tutuola in 2000 posted,”Highs and Lows… After one of the most amazing weeks of my life. I wake up to the news I lost my friend today. Belz is gone.. Damn it! But remember this..’When you ARE having real fun and are Truly Happy. ENJOY it to the fullest! Cause Pain is inevitably coming.’ I’ll miss you Homie.”