As the ranking officer of the precinct, Captain Sean Renard is the man to whom Detectives Nick Burkhardt, Hank Griffin and Sergeant Wu report. He lives on the 16th floor of a ritzy condo, where he employed a maid named Patty. ("Woman in Black")
In the pilot it was revealed that Renard is aware of the supernatural world and has plans for Nick. He is determined to kill Marie Kessler before she tells Nick about whatever group Renard belongs to. His closest accomplice seems to be a Hexenbiest, Adalind Schade.
Renard is a member of one of the Seven Royal Houses. Hexenbeists are said to work for royalty; the second Reaper of the Grimm who came to avenge Hulda and slay Nick knelt before him. Renard's royalty is verified in "Last Grimm Standing" when Leo Taymor refers to him as your highness, and when Renard was with the priest.
When Renard told Reaper that he would not be permitted to avenge Hulda, Reaper seemed surprised that Renard appeared to be protecting a Grimm. At this Renard sliced off the second Reaper's ear, so that he would listen better next time Renard gave orders. Cat and Mouse provided another clue into what Renard could be as the Hundjager, Edgar Waltz entered into his home and the two had a terse conversation. Later on it was explained that the organization that Waltz works for (the Verrat) serves the Seven Royal Houses and acts as their enforcers.
Renard speaks many languages including French, German, and Latin, and seems unusually well versed in antique weapons, such as elephant guns.
Other than the mystery, Renard seems to be an intelligent and sensitive police official, a natural leader, who supports his subordinates. He is good with the press. He is usually on Nick's side, and acts like a good policeman. He does not seem aware that Nick is assisted by Monroe and Rosalee, members of the Portland Wesen community.
Renard was introduced as a compassionate precinct police captain who was worried about Nick Burkhardt's emotional response to his first shooting. Later, he was shown to be responsible for sending Adalind Schade to kill Marie Kessler in the hospital, a task at which Adalind was unsuccessful because Nick interfered.
Renard feigned ignorance about the attack on Marie. He reviewed the security tapes from the hospital with Nick and Hank and asked if there were any others. Renard put a police guard on Marie's room. He met with Adalind Schade and told her to send more people to kill Marie. He then removed the police guard, telling Nick that he was unable to justify guards to the chief of police.
In the episode Organ Grinder, Renard helped Nick and Hank bring down a human-organ harvesting house. After returning to his office, he sees a box with a reaper insignia on it. Upon opening it, he finds an ear that belonged to the reaper whose ear he chopped off. The reaper then calls him telling Renard to keep Nick under control or get rid of him because things are out of balance. Renard replies that Nick is different - he has a badge and a conscience. He then adds, the next time the reapers had better deliver their message in person.
In Last Grimm Standing Renard talks to Leo Taymor (the leader of the Löwen Games) as if they had known each other in times long past. Renard is angry that Taymor has been using unsanctioned kidnapped Wesen to use for his gladiatorial fights. But Taymor doesn't care, he says that the ones Renard allows him to use are all Meth addicts and low lives. When Taymor openly defies Renard, telling him that royalty ain't what it used to be, Renard sets Taymor up for a fall.
He later contacts a very mysterious priest in a confessional, asking the priest to deal with Taymor. After asking if Taymor can be brought back to the fold, and being assured that it can't be done, the priest agrees, saying "As it has always been..." and Renard finishing the sentence" So shall it be again". Renard then finds Taymor to talk, then the priest that Renard asked for help attacks and kills Taymor.
Captain Renard falls under the spell of the coins and shows up the next day in full uniform. He orders a press conference for 2 PM, all personnel are required to attend. The press think Renard's speech is to launch a political campaign, such as to run for mayor, but he says it's just a warning to any would-be criminals. Just as Renard gets in the parking garage Soledad gets into the parking garage and causes a blackout by destroying the breaker. Just as Hank, Nick and Kolt arrive, Soledad takes hold of Renard. A gun fight ensues; Nick helps Renard, but the coins and Kolt are gone. But Renard going through the withdrawal of losing the coins tells Nick he needs the coins and begins to panic.
In Island of Dreams Renard and Adalind Schade are looking at a painting. Renard says his family used to own it and that they lost it along with some heads in the 17th century. Renard then asks how it has been going with Hank. Adalind says Hank is not interested in her. Renard hands over a vial of blood saying Hank just had his physical. Renard tells Adalind to do whatever it takes to make Hank like her.
In this episode it is revealed that Renard was working with someone to pretend he was going out with Adalind to make Hank jealous to see if the love potion Adalind gave to Hank is working to which the other man said it was an honor working with someone like Renard.
At the police station, Captain Renard is getting in his car. Just then, a gun is pressed against his neck by Thomas Woolsey. Renard knows him, he is his cousin's bodyguard; Renard's cousin wants to meet him. At an abandoned warehouse parking lot, Renard's cousin says that the family wants action. Renard tells him that he has been calculating his moves carefully. His cousin cautions him, if he does not give them the key, the family will take the Grimm and find it themselves. Renard then grabs Woolsey's gun and shoots his cousin, Anton Krung, and Woolsey. He then drives off. Later he goes to Nick to see if there is any new evidence in the killings he commited in self defense. Nick shows Renard the phone and in all the commotion that is caused when Wu faints he steals the phone to later put a new sim card in it to throw everyone off the trail. However, Nick is still suspicous but Renard tells him to follow the leads. Later when Adalind fails to take the key from Nick and returns to Renard and her mother, they sense that she has lost her powers; Adalind wonders how Nick could have known that his blood could slay her wesen self (and in so doing subconsequently save Hank in the process), to which Renard could only reply that he's severely understimated Nick, and that it was his own mistake to trust an amateur like Adalind. They both abandon Adalind with Renard telling her she is now useless to him.Akira Kimura. Kimura was looking for Renard to hopefully obtain the Coins of Zakynthos. Renard told him that Farley Kolt had them but Kimura beat Renard because he wasted three days in Los Angeles finding out that Kolt didn't have the Coins. However, before Kimura could slice his throat with a large kitchen knife, Wu and another knocked on the door for the Captain to tell him that they were going to protect him. Wu leaves requesting backup, and Kimura escapes, injuring the other man and leaving Renard alive.
Renard is regal and very dignified. He is ruthless, as seen by his dealing with Marie Kessler. But he also has a conscience and seems interested in Grimm, humans and Wesen all living together in harmony and order. We see this by how he allowed Nick to put an end to the lucrative selling of humans organs in Organ Grinder and the anger he showed when Leo Taymor abducted Wesen who had very minor run ins with the law just because they were excellent fighters. Even though he gets a percentage of the earnings from such enterprises he puts morality ahead of greed. But this attitude, and his continued protection of Nick is not going unnoticed by the Reapers and by the mysterious Verrat. Renard is well aware that his modern approach is dangerous, but he seems willing to stay the course. Its possible that Renard has lived an unusually long time and his knowledge and intellect is extensive.
- Adalind Schade
- Thug 1
- Thug 2
- Priest (Bears Will Be Bears)
- Camilla Gotleib
- Serena Dunbrook
- Leo Taymor
- French Man
- Priest (Last Grimm Standing)
- "Renard" is French for "fox" and may be a reference to his sly, double-dealing nature.
- Renard's first name was revealed in a scene in "Organ Grinder".
- Renard may be subordinate to a body (council) known as the "Verrat." ("Organ Grinder")
- Renard commented about how things are done "in my canton." ("Last Grimm Standing")