Portrayed by Maurice Compte, Mike Duarte is an important supporting character in the 24th season of ‘Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.’ He is introduced in the second episode of the season, titled ‘The One You Feed.’ Duarte is the captain of the gang unit in the Bronx. When we first meet him, his and Olivia Benson’s teams are tasked to investigate the gang rape of Nora Whitman and the vicious attack on her family by a Dominican gang called BX9. Grace Muncy is originally a member of Duarte’s squad, but she later joins Benson’s SVU team in Manhattan. If the recent events in ‘Law & Order: Special Victims Unit’ have made you wonder whether Mike Duarte is dead and Maurice Compte left the show, we got you covered. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Is Mike Duarte Dead?
Yes, Mike Duarte is dead in ‘Law & Order: Specials Victims Unit.’ In the four episodes he appears, Duarte is almost exclusively part of the BX9 storyline. Introduced in season 13, BX9 draws its name from a bus line that runs through the Bronx. The vicious group has garnered notoriety for its involvement in hate crimes, assault, rape, and murder. Benson, whose team often runs into BX9 members, calls them a death cult. In season 24, they become an important part of the narrative, and effectively so does Duarte, who has been after the gang for years.
After BX9 comes for Benson and her son Noah, the former virtually declares war on the gang, and Duarte proves to be her greatest ally. Their main target is revealed to be Oscar Papa, the head of BX9. As the commander of the Bronx gang unit, Duarte leads the investigation into the attack on Benson and shows her the tree where the BX9 members put the underwear of the women they rape to terrorize their family members and force them to join the gang. Eventually, the NYPD gets Papa, and Benson lets Duarte arrest the man.
However, Papa continues to operate his gang from within the prison and orders a hit on Duarte. The attack happens when the police captain visits a bodega to buy cigarettes. Duarte realizes that the people who walked in after him are BX9 members. He tells the shop owner to contact the police before confronting the goons. Duarte suffers severe injuries and later dies during surgery. Papa receives 25 to life for the attack on Benson and another 25 to life for Duarte. As the for the five “principiantes” who carried out the hit, Carisi assures Benson that they are going after them all.
Did Maurice Compte Leave Law & Order: Special Victims Unit?
Yes, after Duarte’s death, it’s safe to presume that Compte has left ‘SVU.’ In an interview with Fangirlish, Compte was asked whether the audience could expect to see him beyond the BX9 arc. The actor’s answer was understandably evasive. “That’s up to the creator gods of the show,” he said. “Right now, Duarte and me are very similar: We just look at the next step. We put one foot in front of the other, and we just keep it going that way.”
Active in the industry since 1996, Compte is mainly known for portraying characters such as Gaff in ‘Breaking Bad,’ Colonel Horacio Carrillo in ‘Narcos,’ Kevin Jimenez in ‘Mayans M.C.,’ Gustavo Barros in ‘The Last Ship, and Josiah in ‘In the Dark.’ Compte has also worked in films such as ‘The Substitute,’ ‘End of Watch,’ ‘A Walk Among the Tombstones,’ and ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.’ Even though Compte has made his departure from ‘SVU,’ one can still watch him in upcoming projects like Little Dixie’ (which releases in early February 2023), ‘NRCity,’ Dominique: Rise of the Phoenix,’ ‘Hellfire, and ‘Don’t Suck.’