Cote de Pablo leaving 'NCIS'

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Image Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

The latest NCIS shocker has nothing to do with crime solving.

CBS confirms actress Cote de Pablo, who plays agent Ziva David on the procedural, will exit the show during the upcoming season.

De Pablo said in a statement: “I’ve had 8 great years with NCIS and Ziva David. I have huge respect and affection for Mark, Gary, Michael, David, Rocky, Pauley, Brian, Sean, all of the team and CBS. I look forward to finishing Ziva’s story.”

The news comes just ahead of the start of production on the show’s upcoming 11th season.

CBS adds: “We respect Cote’s decision, thank her for being an important part of the NCIS team, and for eight terrific years playing Ziva David. Cote and CBS share a great respect for the NCIS audience, and we look forward to working with her and the producers on appropriate closure in this chapter of Ziva’s story.”

The actress joined NCIS in season 3, following the departure of Sasha Alexander, who played Caitlin Todd. Quickly, the show established a friendship between de Pablo’s Ziva and Michael Weatherly’s Anthony DiNozzo. In recent seasons, a possible romance has also been teased. It is not yet known how the issue will be resolved in light of the actress’s departure.

NCIS returns Sept. 24.

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