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|Affiliation||United States Marshals Service|
Andy Eckerson is a deputy marshal in the United States Marshals Service. Originally a detective in the NYPD, he was always looking for the bigger, better rush, and thought that chasing escaped convicts would provide this rush.
Prior to becoming a federal marshal, Eckerson dated Detective Olivia Benson and he knew Elliot Stabler. The romance was short-lived, as Olivia was sure that Eckerson's need for thrills would land him in a body-bag. Some years later, they ended up working together again when convict Michael Baxter broke out of a prison in Virginia and traveled up to New York City to kidnap his stepson, Lee Healy. Eckerson was still attracted to Olivia, and offered to take her out for a drink after the case was closed, but she rejected him, saying that she needed someone stable in her life.
Eckerson is portrayed as an overtly aggressive and violent officer, impulsively prone to using excessive force, brutality, physical abuse, over-the-top confrontational tactics, and virtually no regard for suspects' rights. In "Escape", Benson first tells Eckerson to "keep [his] mouth shut and let [her] take the lead on the interview," to which Eckerson responds, "You know, I don't just kick doors down; I can actually talk to people." But then when Eckerson and Benson interview Mrs. Baxter over the whereabouts of her fugitive son Michael Baxter, Eckerson takes a very confrontational tone with her in contrast to an objective Benson: Eckerson presumptuously accuses Mrs. Baxter of covering up for her son's whereabouts, impugns her commitment to cooperate with the detectives in notifying them if Michael tries to contact her, and then coldly threatens to arrest her upon confirming these suspicions, "sick or not".
After the interview, Benson and Eckerson have an argument about Eckerson's conduct, caring about the "rush" rather than victims, and reckless behavior. However, Eckerson does in fact later turn out to be right about Mrs. Baxter covering up for her son. In a later scene, Eckerson and Benson take part in a raid on a suspect named "Double-D" in a motel room. Eckerson immediately manhandles Double-D and then, in retaliation for Double-D calling Benson a "bitch", Eckerson chastises him with a violent slap assault which Benson seems to condone, and they both reprimand Double-D verbally.
Later, when Michael Baxter causes a hostage situation in which he attempts to argue his innocence, Eckerson keeps trying to order premature sniper shots, defying Cragen's orders and putting the suspect and hostages in harm's way, although when Michael is revealed to be innocent, Eckerson is remorseful of almost getting him killed in the hostage situation. Later, Eckerson's violence seems to be given more weight, when Jeremy becomes the new suspect for the rape and Eckerson and Benson question him: Jeremy denies the accusation and tells Eckerson to "prove it," to which Eckerson angrily retaliates and slams and chokes the suspect against the wall, reprimanding him for letting Michael take the fall and almost die in the hostage situation. Benson keeps ordering Eckerson to let Jeremy go, and after maintaining the chokehold for several seconds and venting, Eckerson finally shoves Jeremy away. Jeremy angrily orders the detectives out.
Novak then admonishes Eckerson that, as a result of his brutality against Jeremy, they cannot get a warrant because Jeremy would counter with a brutality lawsuit. In response to this, Eckerson is annoyed at Benson for being truthful about Eckerson's misconduct. Jeremy, after being arrested, does threaten Eckerson with a lawsuit for the brutality, but Eckerson and Benson retort saying that Jeremy is "low on credibility" because of what he is now a suspect for. In the end, Eckerson's brutality throughout the episode goes pretty much unpunished, although the personal consequence that he does suffer is that Benson declines to get together with him again because of his reckless, thrill-seeking proclivities. (SVU: "Escape")