As the medical examiner, Warner often works with Manhattan‘s 16th Precinct (A.K.A. the Special Victims Unit) by helping its detectives find scientific evidence to support their cases. She and her husband have one daughter in middle school, who was mentioned in the episode “Blast” and in “Juvenile”. She was a doctor in the United States Air Force, and served two tours of duty during the Gulf Warbefore she began work as a medical examiner.
Warner is known for her intelligence and has recently taken a more active role in the SVU team. In the season 7 episode, (SVU: “Blast”), Warner performs impromptu life-saving surgery on a man who had been shot by his own son. While Stabler might have been released by the gunman, Warner minutes later fires at the assailant, wounding him in the leg, thus preventing him from committing suicide by cop. The NYPD ESU team later apprehends him.
After appearing as a recurring character for several seasons, she became a regular cast member in the 2005-2006 season, appearing in the main credits. Tunie had simultaneously appeared on both SVU and the CBS soap As the World Turns from 2000-2006.
In the season 7 episode (SVU: “Blast”) she mentions that she has a daughter. She said she had to pick up her from school after she was just held as a hostage.
In the season 9 episode (SVU: “Harm”) she is adamant that the doctor who deliberately inflicted eventually fatal injuries on an Iraqi while fighting in the Iraq War be brought up on charges. The doctor is subsequently suspended.
In the season 11 episode (SVU: “Beef”), Warner mentions that she has a dog she comes home to and that it’s nice to come home to something alive after her workday.
In the season 11 finale (Shattered), Warner is shot in the line of duty by French anthropologist Dr. Sophie Gerard accidentally as she tries to shoot her son’s father as retribution for the boy’s death. Warner is last seen being wheeled out of the morgue as she tells her morgue assistants, “Back off you vultures, I’m not dead yet.”
She makes her first season 12 appearance in “Merchandise.” She calls in Stabler and Benson after she gets a Jane Doe that was hit by a car. The Jane Doe was sexually abused and had given birth within the past year. Benson and Stabler were confused about being called in at first until Warner said: “Because I know how to do my job, I was shot in the lung, not the head”, and then gave the details.