The Rookie spoilers follow.
The Rookie showrunner Alexi Hawley has opened up about the shock exit of Officer Jackson West, played by Titus Makin, in the season 4 premiere.
The fourth season of the popular ABC police procedural premiered on Sunday (September 26) and fans were left shocked at Officer West's swift exit from the show.
The finale of season three saw Angela Lopez (Alyssa Diaz) being abducted from her and Wesley Evers' (Shawn Ashmore) wedding venue by Sandra 'La Fiera' De La Cruz (Camille Guaty).
In yesterday's episode, Sergeant Grey (Richard T Jones) was reviewing security footage of Lopez and West being forced into getaway cars. West, played by a stand-in actor, was seen to be resisting being shoved into the boot of the car and was then quickly shot by one of La Fiera's strongmen.
The team watched the cold-blooded killing in horror and then went on a mission to rescue Angela and her unborn baby and to track down Jackson's killers.
"It's heartbreaking," Hawley told TVLine about Makin's character's exit in a new interview.
"But I didn't really have a choice. He wasn't coming back, and because of the way we set things up with the [season three] finale, there was just no way to tell that story without Jackson...
"But we lean really hard into honouring how he was the heart of the show, and it was definitely impactful for us to have to deal with that."
Makin has been in the show since the first episode aired back in 2018, playing John Nolan's (Nathan Fillion) fellow rookie cop as he joined the LAPD and was assigned Lopez as his training officer.
Earlier this month, Hawley confirmed that Makin would not be coming back to the show for its fourth season.
"What I can say is that Titus [Makin] was not coming back to the show, so we needed to do the best that we could to honour the character who's been so primally a part of the show," he told TVLine.
Makin hasn't yet commented on his exit from the show.
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