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Criminal Investigations

Are You Under Investigation by the Police? If So, You Need a Lawyer.

A common mistake people make is hiring a criminal defense attorney after they get arrested or charged for a crime. While it is important to have a lawyer represent you during these instances, you must get a lawyer before you get arrested or charged. Thus, you need legal defense as soon as you know or believe you are under investigation for a crime.

From Gal's interview for the Masters of the Courtroom series on

This is because your rights could get violated at any point in the investigative process. For example, an officer may have unlawfully searched your home or vehicle without obtaining a warrant and seized your property to be used as evidence. Maybe they failed to read your Miranda Rights before interrogating you. These common violations have devastating outcomes for the accused, which is why you need an attorney to help prevent these violations or leverage them as a way to get your charges reduced or dropped. Your case may even get dismissed altogether.

Reasons for Criminal Investigations

It can be frightening to learn or think you are under investigation for a crime. It may feel like you’re “walking on eggshells” in your daily life, not knowing what to do or how to act. However, you should keep in mind that the purpose of a criminal investigation is not to frame you for a crime but rather:

  • Develop sufficient factual information so the prosecutor can fairly and objectively determine whether and what charges should be brought about
  • Guard against the prosecution of the innocent
  • Develop legally admissible evidence to convict the guilty and warrant prosecution

Police Investigation Process

With this in mind, it may benefit you to learn the steps in a police investigation to better understand what you may be up against. Remember that even if you are or may be under investigation, that does not mean you are automatically getting charged with a crime nor guilty of one. The purpose of a police investigation is to confirm the suspicion that a person might be guilty of a crime.

So, how do they work?

First, a crime is brought to the attention of state and/or federal authorities by an alleged crime victim or a witness. Then, a state or federal law enforcement agency will investigate whether or not a crime was committed and if so, who committed it.

During the investigation, the police may obtain a warrant to search your person or property. In doing so, they may ask you questions. DO NOT answer any questions without an attorney present. Anything you say can and will be used against you in court. Even if the police assure you that they are simply asking routine questions that have nothing to do with suspecting you of a crime, do not believe them. Police are legally allowed to use deceptive techniques to obtain evidence for a crime. In other words, the police can lie to you.

For instance, they may say that if you don’t answer their questions, you will be arrested. However, you are legally allowed to remain silent and refuse to answer any questions without legal counsel present. Unfortunately, the police may also break the law and violate your Fourth Amendment rights by searching areas that aren’t permitted in their warrant. If the warrant only permits a search in your car and on your person, then the police cannot search your home or office at work.

Our Criminal Defense Attorney Will Fiercely Champion Your Rights

A criminal investigation by the police can be scary, but it doesn’t have to be. With the representation of our Chicago criminal defense lawyer, you can rest assured that we will protect your rights and work to minimize any police misconduct and deceptive investigative techniques against you. With an award-winning reputation for helping clients get favorable outcomes in their case, Pissetzky Law LLC is your trusted line of defense.

Questions? Get the answers you need by contacting us at (312) 883-9466 today!


  • Case Dismissed Case Dismissed After State Refuses to Cooperate
    People v. IP (2014) Mr. IP was arrested for possession of a large amount of a controlled substance after Chicago police executed a search warrant. Arguing that the information in the search warrant was fabricated, Mr. Pissetzky filed a Motion to Produce Informant. Against the odds, the judge granted the motion and ordered the State to produce the informant. When the State failed to do so, the judge dismissed the case.
  • Not Guilty Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney Secures a “Not Guilty” for Possession, Conspiracy, and Intent
    Chicago criminal defense attorney, Gal Pissetzky takes the fight all the way for his clients. Gal was able to secure a “not guilty” on all counts for his client in a case involving possession, conspiracy, and intent to distribute cocaine.
  • Case Overturned Chicago Criminal Defense Lawyer Gets Drug Case Overturned
    Chicago criminal defense attorney Gal Pissetzky takes the fight all the way for his clients, even when the fight involves creating new laws to protect their rights. While defending a day laborer accused of drug trafficking crimes, the prosecutor in the case questioned the man as to how he was able to come up with the $75,000 bail bond. The client was found guilty but Mr. Pissetzky objected to the bail bond reference and the case was overturned on appeal. When it was sent back to trial, Gal Pissetzky negotiated for time served and the client regained his freedom.
  • Not Guilty of All Charges Class X felony Possession with intent to deliver marijuana and cocaine

    Not Guilty of All Charges

    People v. LG – Not Guilty of a Class X felony Possession with intent to deliver marijuana and cocaine. Although the chicago police had a search warrant to search a home where they found large amounts of marijuana and cocaine, as well as an identification card and other proof of residency for LG, the judge found LG NOT GUILTY of all charges.

  • Sentenced Reduced Client Facing 40 Years Gets 4 Months Instead
    Chicago criminal defense attorney Gal Pissetzky argues for a light sentence and wins! Mr. BC was charged with a large drug conspiracy in a federal court case. He was personally responsible for distributing over 200 kilos of marijuana. After intense negotiations with the government and without ever having to become an informant or a snitch, Mr. Pissetzky convinced the judge that Mr. BC should receive a very short sentence of four months, despite the fact that he was facing up to 40 years in prison. The judge agreed with Mr. Pissetzky and sentenced Mr. BC to just four months in jail.
  • Not Guilty on All Counts Cross-Examination by Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney Leads to a “Not Guilty”
    People v. Z. (2009) – Mr. Z. was accused of transporting five kilograms of cocaine in a secret compartment of a car. After a trial in which Gal Pissetzky cross-examined officers from the elite narcotics division of the Chicago Police Department, the judge found Mr. Z. NOT GUILTY of all charges.
  • Federal Judge Imposes Light Sentence Over Government’s Objections Federal Crime
    U.S. v. HJ (2014) Mr. HJ was charged as the leader of a large Chicago drug organization. The government attributed over 26 kilos of cocaine to Mr. HJ, and sought a minimum 15-year-sentence based on his alleged leadership role. After a very contested sentencing hearing, during which Mr. Pissetzky argued that Mr. HJ was not a the leader of the organization and should therefore receive a much lower sentence, the judge agreed with Mr. Pissetzky and told the government it had not met its burden of proof. Although the judge found Mr. HJ responsible for 26 kilograms of cocaine, Mr. Pissetzky convinced the judge to sentence Mr. HJ to only 70 months–nine years less than what the government wanted.
  • Reduced Sentence Federal sentencing on drug conspiracy charges – 18 months for 26 kilos of cocaine without ever cooperating
    (USA v. MM) Mr. MM was charged in Federal Court with drug conspiracy to distribute over 26Kilograms of cocaine. The government used an informant and recorded calls. After long but successful negotiations with the government, Mr. Pissetzky was able to convince the prosecutor to amend the charges so MM won’t be facing the mandatory 10 years to life in prison. The government, however, still sought to send MM away for a long period of incarceration. MM never cooperated or became an informant!!!! Mr. Pissetzky filed a sentencing memorandum. During the federal sentencing hearing, Mr. Pissetzky argued to the Judge for a much reduced sentence. The Judge sentenced MM to a short 18months.
  • Not Guilty Gal Pissetzky Gains Not Guilty Verdict on Tough Drug Case. Defendant Wins!
    (People v. CC) – FINDING OF NOT GUILTY – CC was charge with possession with intent to deliver 175 grams of cocaine, and 4 guns where also found during the search of the apartment he was in. Chicago police had a search warrant to an apartment that they claimed CC was living in with his girlfriend. During the search of the apartment, the police recovered 4 guns, ammunition, 175 grams of cocaine, and a scale. At trial, attorney Pissetzky and one other attorney established through cross-examination that the State could not prove that CC actually lived in the apartment. The judge found CC NOT GUILTY of all charges.
  • Case Dismissed Gal Pissetzky Gets Federal Drug Case Dismissed After Cross Examining DEA Agents.
    Defendant Wins! (USA v LG) – RARE CASE OF NO PROBABLE CAUSE FINDING IN FEDERAL COURT – The DEA arrested LG with his wife and charged them with possession of 2.5 kilograms of cocaine. The government alleged at a preliminary hearing in federal court that LG’s wife was trying to sell the cocaine to an undercover DEA agents. Mr. Pissetzky was representing LG, who was arrested in the undercover DEA car after the wife handed the drugs to the DEA agent. During the hearing, Mr. Pissetzky questioned the DEA agent and established that LG was merely present during the drug deal. The federal magistrate judge found that there was not probable cause to arrest LG and ordered that the case against him be dismissed immediately.


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