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Chicago P.D.’s Jesse Lee Soffer Talks Halstead’s ‘Drowning,’ If He’s Really Over Lindsay and More (Exclusive)

Jesse Lee Soffer Jay Halstead Chicago P.D.
Jesse Lee Soffer as Jay Halstead on 'Chicago P.D.'

Jay Halstead has some dark thoughts going through his head and on the Wednesday, November 15, episode, some of those came spilling out.

“It was intense to film. I’ve still got some boo-boos,” Jesse Lee Soffer tells Us Weekly exclusively about the heartbreaking episode that dove into Halstead’s PTSD. However, that drama didn’t end when the episode did — Soffer tells Us that the aftermath from this week’s episode will continue and will impact everyone around him. “He needs some help, he’s drowning. We’ve never seen this character struggle like that before,” he says.

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Read our Q&A below:

Us Weekly: This week was heavy for Halstead. Starting at the beginning we see him having nightmares. Has this been a problem for him for a while?
Jesse Lee Soffer: I think he’s probably felt with it here and there in the past. He keeps it under wraps, keeps it buried. Its think it’s really magnified by the situation that he went through in episode 1 of this season where he killed the little girl. It opened Pandora’s box so to speak and he can’t close it right now.

Us: He’s definitely hiding a lot, something Haley learned this week. Will this impact their partnership?
JLS: Definitely. I think that she was very weary of him and is worried about him … but also needs to trust her partner and I think it’s hard to trust a guy who doesn’t look like he’s making rational decisions or good choices. She just cares that she sees someone struggling and wants to help.

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Us: So they’ll be butting heads?
JLS: I’m sure. I would expect some drama, some head-butting. I would expect to see them kind of at odds with each other and not sure where they stand with each other for a while. They’re going to be kind of cautious with their relationship but also with Voight. How much does he know and how is the unit going to deal with this? It’ll be good drama!

Jesse Lee Soffer Jay Halstead Chicago P.D.
Jesse Lee Soffer as Jay Halstead on ‘Chicago P.D.’

Us: This season especially is SO full of secrets!
JLS: Season 5: the season of secrets. It’s good — people have secrets. Real people do. Everybody’s going through something, everyone’s got some personal struggle. I think it’s cool that the writers are doing that this season and putting out these situations where there isn’t a right or wrong answer. Sometimes, there is no heroic outcome. Sometimes watching someone be human might be more interesting.

Us: This was the first time we’ve seen Jay be romantic with anyone since Lindsay’s departure. Will there be a something real with Camila?
JLS: It’s gonna be an interesting arch. I don’t know how long but definitely an arch. I think that it’s going to be a real challenge for Jay reconciling caring about this person, caring about what they’ve gone through, but also lying to her. She thinks that he’s this guy that he’s not. He did end up caring about her brother and he gets killed. He does want to be there for her and he is attracted to her, but it’s all based on a lie. All of that’s going to boil to a head at some point.

Us: Is he ready to put himself in a relationship again?
JLS: Define relationship. Is he ready for a healthy relationship with a woman — a partnership, a love commitment and all of those things? It doesn’t seem so. He’s lying to this person about who he is. She doesn’t even know his real name. So, no. I would say no, he doesn’t seem ready! But life goes on.

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Us: So that struggle with her will continue.
JLS: He does want to tell her the truth and hasn’t found a way to do that yet. I think he loses his chance to tell her the truth.

Us: Is he really over Lindsay?
JLS: Yes, at this point, for sure. At the beginning of the season, he went through the apartment and had to deal with the fact that she’s gone. I think that had to do with why he slipped so hard after the shooting with the little girl. He didn’t have anybody to rely on. I think he’s finding his way back from all that now. We’re seeing the eye of the storm.

Chicago P.D. airs on NBC Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET.

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