Bayard Ellis
Name Bayard Ellis
Title Defense Attorney
Affiliation Project Innocence
New York Center for Civil Liberties
Occupation Attorney
Family Unnamed father (deceased)
Unnamed daughter
Status Alive
Actor Andre Braugher
First Appearance "True Believers"
Last Appearance "Perverted Justice"

Bayard Ellis is a defense attorney. He used to represent drug dealers until he won a big civil suit in 2004. After that, he founded the New York Center for Civil Liberties and became an advocate for fighting the judicial system.


  • Acquitted - Represents Michael Wedmore when he is accused of raping Sarah Walsh. He claims that the girl had a prejudice towards him after having sex with an African American bartender the night before. Michael is eventually found not guilty through reasonable doubt.
  • Acquitted - Retained by Georgia Stanton to defend her husband, a famous football player named Jake Stanton accused of being a John to a pimp at Benson's insistence. Bayard pleads him not guilty by mental disease or defect by claiming he is so brain damaged that he did not know what he was doing. Jake is eventually found not guilty but Jake commits suicide by shooting himself in the chest when his dementia came to light during the trial.
  • Took a plea - Retained by Olivia Benson to represent her half-brother, Simon Marsden and his fiancee Tracy, in both a possession of marijuana charge and a child custody case involving his daughter and step-son. The criminal case against Marsden was dismissed as it was based on racial profiling, but was unable to get the couple custody of their kids. Ellis tried to appeal the ruling on the grounds that the judge typically displayed racial bias. After Simon kidnapped his children with Tracy's help, Ellis represented them in their new criminal trial. He worked out a deal with Tracy's new attorney where Tracy would regain custody of their children so long as Simon isn't living with them and the kidnapping charge is reduced to custodial interference Simon only serving sixty days. He has a chance of regaining custody in three years.
  • Released from death row. Serving the rest of his prison time.


  • When Sgt. John Munch comes into the squad room Ellis asks "Have we met?" Ellis is played by Andre Braugher and has worked with Richard Belzer before on Homicide: Life on the Street as Frank Pembleton (Munch's character started on Homicide: Life on the Street and crossed over to Law & Order).

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