SSA Aaron Hotchner (Thomas Gibson) reportedly exits Criminal Minds season 12 by the third episode while his replacement could make his debut on the eighth episode.

So far, fans of Criminal Minds season 12 have met the new agent on board who is none other than new BAU member Luke Alvez (Adam Rodriguez). Interestingly, Penelope (Kirsten Vangness) who is close to Derek Morgan (Shemar Moore) was not pleased. Nevertheless, the show would likely find a way to get them working on a case together. Perhaps, it could help them get comfortable with one another.

In addition to Luke Alvez, fans also welcomed the return of Dr. Diana Reid (Jane Lynch). It has been awhile since she was on the show. Hence, it would no doubt be interesting to see Reid’s (Matthew Gray Gubler) reaction. Emily Prentiss (Paget Brewster) also return as a cast regular.

Moreover, spoilers prior to the September 28 premiere revealed she would take over the team after Hotch’s departure.

However, her stint as team leader could be temporary, as the show might have found his replacement. According to E Online, CBS announced the casting of Damon Gupton as a series regular. His character Special Agent Stephen Walker debuts on Criminal Minds season 12 in episode 8.

Then again, Deadline revealed the new head of the BAU would come from within. Hence, it is anybody’s guess who it could be. Nevertheless, showrunner Erica Messer expressed enthusiasm for his entry to the long running series.

“Our BAU family is growing. We’re excited to have Damon join the show and work alongside our amazing cast and crew,” showrunner Erica Messer said. His previous TV roles included the Bates Motel and Empire. He is also part of the forthcoming series Goliath. Prior to acting, Damon Gupton is also an accomplished symphony conductor.

Criminal Minds season 12 airs on CBS every Wednesday at 9 p.m.