Shemar Moore to exit Criminal Minds after 11 seasons
Photo: Cliff Lipson/CBS

Shemar Moore To Exit “Criminal Minds”

After 11 seasons as SSA Derek Morgan on CBS’s hit crime drama, “Criminal Minds,” Shemar Moore is exiting the show.

Following the episode “A Beautiful Disaster,” fans learned Moore’s character, Derek Morgan, who survived a harrowing kidnapping, is leaving the BAU to focus on life with his family.

Executive Producer Erica Messer shared a touching message from the “Criminal Minds” team:

All of us at Criminal Minds are sad to say “see you later” to Agent Derek Morgan. Even sadder that our friend Shemar Moore isn’t on set anymore. It was definitely a surprise that he wanted “To leap,” as Shemar said, “to try new things.” For those reasons, we have nothing but love and respect for him and his choice. But it doesn’t mean we can’t also be really, really sad.

It was important that we honor a character who has grown with us for over a decade, which is why we wrote the 3-episode arc for Morgan. Those final episodes were directed by fellow actors with the last one co-written by his “baby girl,” Kirsten Vangsness. Thomas Gibson got things started with an amazing journey in “Derek,” followed by our milestone 250th episode directed by Joe Mantegna. Matthew Gray Gubler helmed “A Beautiful Disaster,” helping Shemar and Morgan walk out with a proud, determined stride. One that we’ve been honored to have on our team for eleven years.

Shemar sent out a special farewell video to his fans where he expressed his gratitude saying, “Without you, my dream is not possible. I adore you for believing in me. Thank you for letting me bring Derek Morgan to life.”

See the video on page 2.