Jesse Lee Soffer is finally giving fans insight into why he left Chicago P.D.
Having starred on the NBC crime drama since it premiered in 2013, last summer, the actor made the surprising call decision to turn in his badge during the show’s 10th season. And he’s never really explained why—until now.
“I’ve thought so hard about how to answer this question—and there’s no good answer,” Soffer, 38, who played Detective Jay Halstead on the procedural, told Variety in an interview published Feb. 23. “Except I was ready for more.”
“Eventually, you know the character so well, there’s not much that can shift or transform,” he continued. “I really wanted to grow and expand, and we’ve only got this one trip. If I signed up again, it would have been for another three years. I would have turned 40 on the show. I thought, ‘You know what? It’s time to take a risk.”
And it wasn’t an easy call by any means, calling the decision to leave the One Chicago world was “one of the toughest decisions I’ve ever had to make in my life.”
One of the reasons it was so difficult? The extremely loyal viewers. “I love the fans of our show so much, and I love my fans,” he admitted. “I know that they’re still grieving this, and to some degree, I am too.”