A slew of talent has visited Benson & Co. over the years, including Jerry Lewis, Robin Williams and Wyclef Jean (pictured above). Here are a few guest stars whose faces you recognize, but may not remember made an appearance—or two—on the long-running drama.
Milo Ventimiglia (This Is Us)
Appeared in: Season 5, Episode 11 “Escape”
In 2003, just two years after joining Gilmore Girls
, the current This Is Us
star appeared as Lee Healy, a 20-something childhood rape victim. When the man accused of the crime escapes from prison 10 years later and kidnaps Lee, a web of lies emerges and Benson (Mariska Hargitay) must determine who is being honest.
This episode also featured a young Craig Beirko (UnReal) as Deputy Marshal Andy Eckerson, Benson’s ex.
Virginia Sherwood/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank
Bob Saget (Fuller House)
Appeared in: Season 8, Episode 9 “Choreographed”
In 2006’s “Choreographed,” the Tanner grandpa played Glenn Cheales, a self-described computer nerd embroiled in a case involving a model who ends up poisoned to death in Central Park while walking her dog. It’s revealed that Glenn’s wife and the victim’s husband are having an affair and the two are soon accused of the murder, but as Benson and Stabler (Christopher Meloni) discover, the poisoning was committed by Glenn who knew of their adultery from a tracking chip in his wife’s shoulder.
Kal Penn (Designated Survivor)
Appeared in: Season 8, Episode 12 “Outsider”
In 2007, the year he also starred in 24, Penn played Henry Chanoor, the janitor son of a New York doctor with a penchant for scrapbooking former rape cases. Chanoor becomes fame-obsessed when his attacks on women are reported across the city. The case made Tutuola (Ice-T) and Brooklyn SVU’s Chester Lake’s (recurring guest star Adam Beach) heads spin until Henry’s father betrays his son. He almost gets away thanks to his mother, but a call to a local radio station leads the detectives right to him.
Sarah Hyland (Modern Family)
Appeared in: Season 10, Episode 12 “Hothouse”
The Modern Family
star appeared on SVU
twice: the 2001 episode “Repression” and 2009’s “Hothouse,” which aired months before the start of her hit ABC sitcom.
In the latter, an 18-year-old Hyland played Jennifer, a manic 14-year-old prodigy who confesses to killing her roommate Elsa (Juliet Brett) out of jealousy. Benson helps Jennifer plead insanity after finding ADHD meds taken to stay awake for days at a time. You’re the Worst’s Aya Cash also appears as Elsa’s physically abused older sister, Katrina.
Daveed Diggs (black-ish)
Appeared in: Season 17, Episode 4 “Community Policing”
Known for his roles on black-ish
and in Broadway’s Hamilton: An American Musical
, Diggs stopped by the procedural in 2015 as civil rights attorney Louis Henderson in an episode that also featured recurring SVU
guest star and Diggs’ Hamilton
costar Leslie Odom, Jr. as Reverend Curtis Scott. The two champion the rights of an unarmed young black man who is shot to death by New York cops in a highly traumatic case.
Diggs also returned as Henderson in 2016 with another Hamilton co-star, Anthony Ramos, in “Forty-One Witnesses.”
Geneva Carr (Bull)
Appeared in: Season 17, Episode 7 “Patrimonial Burden”
Before joining the Michael Weatherly on Bull, Carr appeared on SVU three different times. Her most recent appearance in Season 17 was as Pam Baker, the matriarch of a spiritual TV family on the show 13aker’s Dozen (think the Duggars). When her 13-year-old daughter passes out at her virtue ball (a party following the tween’s pledge of purity), the squad learns that she is pregnant. When Pam learns more than one of her daughters was at risk by the same man, she lets Benson & co. in to help.