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Is Torres Leaving Chicago P.D.? How the Rookie's Dark Secrets Caught Up with Him
Benjamin Levy Aguilar opens up to NBC Insider about how Torres crossed the line.
Chicago P.D. returned on May 17 with Season 10, Episode 21's "New Life", and it was all about the new rookie in town, Dante Torres (Benjamin Levy Aguilar).
We haven't gotten to see much of the life of the mysterious officer since "Dónde Vives" (Season 10, Episode 4), which ended with him beating a local gang member while off-duty. "New Life" dove even deeper into the new cop's dark side after Torres was led to an abandoned car where he found the the body of a man named Ariza. It turns out that Torres knows him because he was a major drug dealer in his neighborhood. However, he keeps this a secret from Voight and the rest of the Intelligence Unit, even hiding a photo he finds at Ariza's home that shows the two of them together.
By the end of the episode as the Intelligence Unit investigates his murder, Torres reveals that Ariza recruited him as a teenager to be his enforcer once he left juvie.
"He made a deal with me," he told Voight (Jason Beghe). "I did it to protect my mother, my family."
Read on to find out everything we found out about Torres in a recap of "New Life".
What are Torres' secrets on Chicago P.D.?
After a suspect attempts to shoot his friend Mia as he escorts her home, Torres chases him down and corners him in an abandoned school. He then beats him and cuffs him to a bench, threatening to water board him if he doesn't provide information about Ariza's murder. Unbeknownst to him, Voight is watching the entire (illegal) exchange. In the end, the suspect tells Torres everything he needs to know, and no water boarding is necessary. But would Torres have actually taken that dangerous step if given the chance?
"I think that at that point he was just seeing dark. Seeing red," Aguilar, whose played Torres since Season 9, tells NBC Insider.
He continues, "I really think this up to interpretation 'cause I don't even know the answer if I'm being honest. I think that logically I would like to say, 'No, he wouldn't.' He would come to his senses, but that was just someone that was as real as it gets. That was someone that gets to that place and is hoping to not have to do that. So, I really don't know."
I think that at that point he was just seeing dark. Seeing red.”
Voight later confronts Torres, and he finally tells him about his real relationship with Ariza.
"I beat people for him. I did terrible things, unforgivable things," he told Voight. "But I never waterboarded anybody."
He goes on to say he didn't kill anyone during that time, but he himself was waterboarded in order to be released from Ariza's gang. With his secrets all on the table, he asks Voight if he's fired, who responds: "I'll see you at the district." Voight also says everything they talked about won't be reported in paperwork or to the rest of the team, covering up another crime for one of his officers.
It looks like Torres still has his spot at the Intelligence Unit.
What did this episode mean for Torres?
With Torres bending the rules to near violent proportions, did we get a glimpse at his true intentions as an officer, or was he just playing Bad Cop?
"In my opinion, that was real," Aguilar tells NBC Insider. "He definitely had some sort of persona to get [the suspect] to the point of fear. Of course to get him to say the information, but he was in his own trauma — in his own world."
The actor went on to explain Torres' trauma and the anger viewers saw in "New Life".
"He has worked so hard to move forward from his past that it's really hard to break those cycles as a child when you come from deep trauma and broken homes," Aguilar tells us. "He literally chose the opposite of what he was. He became a cop. It's literally the opposite of what he could have been.To stop people like that and to stop those cycles and to save people, and then he has this past that doesn't go away, and it keeps hunting him and it keeps being thrown in his face in different ways."
He continues, "It's really hard to grow in those moments and those places with those influences, and he did what he thought was best and to protect his family, and it does not stop... that combined with the pain of almost losing a person that he loves — so with Mia — and having to navigate that too, it was like a pressure cooker of so many things."