Abbie Carmichael

Abigail "Abbie" Carmichael is a fictional character on the TV drama Law & Order created by Rene Balcer and portrayed by model/actress Angie Harmon. The character was regularly featured from 1998 to 2001.

In Law & Order

Abbie Carmichael is introduced in the episode "Cherished", having transferred from the Narcotics Bureau to replace Jamie Ross (Carey Lowell) as Jack McCoy's (Sam Waterston) assistant in the New York County DA's office. The series gradually reveals that she attended the University of Texas School of Law. ("Shield").

Carmichael is characterized as a staunch political conservative: She is pro-life, opposes gun control, favors the death penalty, and has little to no faith in criminal rehabilitation programs. These political beliefs often put her in conflict with McCoy, Adam Schiff (Steven Hill) and Nora Lewin (Dianne Wiest), all of whom are of a more liberal stripe.

In the episode "Punk", Carmichael's prosecution of an incarcerated woman (who had murdered a corrections officer she claims had forced her into a sexual relationship) affects her political outlook. Carmichael, who had prosecuted the woman before on a drug charge, has no sympathy for her and seems hell-bent on putting her in prison for life — until she cross-examines the woman, who reveals that she blames herself for being raped. This strikes a chord in Carmichael, who suddenly arranges a lenient plea bargain for the woman. Carmichael later reveals to McCoy that she had been raped as a freshman in college by a third-year law student she had been dating.

In the 1999 episode "Refuge", her friend and fellow ADA, Toni Ricci, is murdered by the Russian mobsters she was prosecuting. It is the only time during Carmichael's tenure in the DA's office that she lets anyone see her cry.

Carmichael makes her final appearance in the episode "Deep Vote", as she accepts an offer to join the U.S. Attorney's office in New York. She is replaced by Serena Southerlyn (Elisabeth Röhm).

In Law & Order spinoffs

Carmichael also appeared in the spinoff series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit until 2000, when Alexandra Cabot (Stephanie March) was introduced as a regular character.

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