“Law & Order” Star Richard Belzer Dies At Age 78

The Forward reports:

Richard Belzer, the stand-up comedian who left an indelible mark on television in the character of Det. John Munch, a tough and versatile Jewish cop, has died at the age of 78. His death was first reported on social media by his friend, the actor Laraine Newman, of Saturday Night Live fame.

In the 1970s, Belzer served as the warm-up comedian for SNL, and appeared multiple times on its early seasons in bit parts.

Belzer, who retired from acting in 2016, was known for some out-there claims about the U.S. government, co-authoring Hit List: An In-Depth Investigation into the Mysterious Deaths of Witnesses to the JFK Assassination and other books. Belzer, who warned the U.S. was becoming a “fascist state” as early as 2013, had been living in the South of France.

Read the full article. Belzer played Detective Munch in multiple series for 23 seasons, making his the longest-running male television character.