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People Vs Joseph Amico

Covered by NYDaily News. Las Vegas man accused of threatening a prominent attorney and making vile remarks.

Faced 10+ Years in Prison

People Vs. Anna Sorokin

Covered by New York Times, and other outlets. Fake heiress accused of conning the city’s wealthy, and has an HBO special being made about her.

Faced 3+ Years in Prison

People Vs. Genevieve Sabourin

Accused of stalking Alec Baldwin. The case garnered nationwide attention, with USAToday, NYPost, and other media outlets following it closely.

Faced Potential Charges

Ghislaine Maxwell Juror

Juror who prompted calls for new Ghislaine Maxwell trial turns to lawyer who defended Anna Sorokin.

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Meet Todd Spodek

WE PROVIDE WHITE GLOVE SERVICE TO CLIENTS
WHO WANT MORE FROM THEIR ATTORNEY

The Spodek Law Group understands how delicate high-profile cases can be, and has a strong track record of getting positive outcomes. Our lawyers service a clientele that is nationwide. With offices in both LA and NYC, and cases all across the country - Spodek Law Group is a top tier law firm.

Todd Spodek is a second generation attorney with immense experience. He has many years of experience handling 100’s of tough and hard to win trials. He’s been featured on major news outlets, such as New York Post, Newsweek, Fox 5 New York, South China Morning Post, Insider.com, and many others.

In 2022, Netflix released a series about one of Todd’s clients: Anna Delvey/Anna Sorokin.

Why Clients Choose Spodek Law Group

The reason is simple: clients want white glove service, and lawyers who can win. Every single client who works with the Spodek Law Group is aware that the attorney they hire could drastically change the outcome of their case. Hiring the Spodek Law Group means you’re taking your future seriously. Our lawyers handle cases nationwide, ranging from NYC to LA. Our philosophy is fair and simple: our nyc criminal lawyers only take on clients who we know will benefit from our services.

We’re selective about the clients we work with, and only take on cases we know align with our experience – and where we can make a difference. This is different from other law firms who are not invested in your success nor care about your outcome.

If you have a legal issue, call us for a consultation.
We are available 24/7, to help you with any – and all, challenges you face.

An Overview of Internal Affairs Investigations in California

An Overview of Internal Affairs Investigations in California
Your job as a police officer is to investigate crimes and send criminals away.  What if you are accused of a crime and Internal Affairs contacts you?
The California internal affairs defense lawyers at our firm can help you.  Among our ranks are former cops and prosecutors.  We are aware of how the system works and can represent cops accused of criminal or administrative misconduct.
 
In this article, we offer you an overview of IA investigations in California.  We cover:

  1. How internal affairs investigations work
  2. What are the rights of police personnel in an IA investigation?

 
POBRA
The Lybarger Admonishment
Your Constitutional Protections
What can an internal affairs defense attorney do?
 
You will also find our articles on Criminal Defense of Police Officers and California State Employees and Criminal Convictions helpful.
 
How internal affairs investigations work
What is an Internal Affairs Investigation?
An Internal affairs investigation is an investigations into possible misconduct and/or criminal activity by officers in a law enforcement agency.
 
Administrative or Criminal investigation?
An administrative internal affairs investigation focuses on whether an officer has committed noncriminal work-related misconduct.
Criminal internal affairs investigations examine whether an officer has committed a crime.  These can result in criminal prosecution and incarceration.
 
Other Agencies May Investigate
In some cases, other entities besides the officer’s employing agency could become involved.
Sometimes, federal officials come in to investigate when a possible civil rights violation was committed.  This happened in the historic 1991 Rodney King case.
As a rule, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office must investigate any case of an officer-involved shooting or in-custody death.
On top of this, police commissions, inspector generals and outside watchdog agencies may provide additional oversight.
 
What are the rights of police personnel in an IA investigation?
Depending on the situation, an officer who is the subject of an IA interrogation can rely upon a number of statutory and constitutional provisions for protection.
 
POBRA
This California statute (Public Safety Officers Procedural Bill of Rights) applies to all administrative internal affairs investigations.
POBRA establishes conditions with which an employing law enforcement agency is required to comply in an interrogation that could lead to “punitive action” in the form of written reprimand, demotion, suspension, dismissal, salary reduction, or transfer as a consequence.
POBRA lists protections as follows:
Any interrogation generally must be conducted at a reasonable hour, preferably while the officer is on duty.  It must only endure over a reasonable period.
The interrogating officer and others present must inform the officer being interrogated of their ranks, names and command.
No more than two interrogators may ask questions at a time.  Further, the officer being interrogated must not be subjected to any offensive language.
Before the interrogation, the officer must be informed of the nature of the investigation.
The officer getting interrogated is allowed to bring his or her own recording device to the interrogation.
Anytime an interrogation is based on matters that could possibly result in punitive action, that officer can be represented by a union representative or California internal affairs investigation defense lawyer.
If, at any point prior to or during the interrogation, it is deemed that the officer could be charged with a crime, that officer must immediately be informed of his or her constitutional rights.
POBRA applies only to administrative investigations that are conducted by an officer’s employing agency.  These rights do not apply in investigations that are  “concerned solely and directly with alleged criminal activities.”
Additionally, according to the California Supreme Court’s interpretation, POBRA provides one more protection.  Should it be “deemed” during an internal affairs investigation that a police officer could be facing criminal charges, he or she must be read their Miranda rights.
 
The Lybarger Admonishment
Just like other employees, police officers must follow orders from their superiors – even during a California internal affairs investigation.  If their commanding officer orders them to answer a question and they remain silent, that officer risks being disciplined for insubordination.
Nevertheless, the officer retains their Fifth Amendment constitutional right against compelled self-incrimination.
How the United States Supreme Court has reconciled these conflicting provisions is by clarifying that the cop in this circumstance retains immunity as to “compelled” statements.  Pursuant to the Garrity/Lefkowtiz rule, an officer may be disciplined for standing silent in the face of an order, but any subsequent compelled statement (and any evidence that comes from such a statement) cannot be used against the cop in a criminal prosecution.
 
Pitchess Motions
In a Pitchess motion, the defendant in a criminal case can request access to an officer’s personnel file. In such cases, the defense is looking for witnesses who filed prior complaints against the officer.  They can potentially use these witnesses to impeach the officer at trial.
 
Your Constitutional Protections
A peace officer also has their Fourth Amendment constitutional right against unreasonable search and seizure, and their Sixth Amendment constitutional right to counsel to rely upon.
What this means is that cops may not be arrested without probable cause, subjected to unreasonable detention, refused access to counsel or otherwise forced to endure conscience-shocking treatment at the hands of law enforcement.
 
Nevertheless, things can get hairy when it comes to interrogations of police officers by their employers.  The line between an employer or enforcer becomes blurry.  One can, therefore, float in a rather uncomfortable gray area between a California internal affairs investigation and an arrest.
 
What are the rights of police personnel in an IA investigation?
You probably know at least one case in which a skilled criminal defense lawyer helped a suspect get out of trouble.   Surely you should reap the same benefits if you happen to be a suspect, right?
The IA lawyers at Spodek Law Group, still keep cop hours –one of us is always available.  Whether you have been involved in a critical incident, or you’re facing an internal affairs interrogation or criminal charge, we’re here to stand with you.
As former police personnel ourselves, we know how to handle IA, the media and other parties who could be involved.  We can help you navigate the process so you get the full benefit of your rights and protections.
The California Internal Affairs Defense Attorneys at Spodek Law Group Can Help You.
For more information, visit:
Police Officers Research Association of California
California Correctional Peace Officers Association
Los Angeles Police Protective League
 
 

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Testimonials

I was searching for a law firm with some power to help me deal with a warrant in New York . After 6 days I decided to go with Spodek Law Group. It helped that This law firm is well respected by not only the top law firms in New York , but the DA , Judge as well. I...

~Fonder Brandon

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It was my good fortune to retain Spodek Law Group for representation for my legal needs. From the beginning, communication was prompt and thorough. Todd, Kenneth and Alex were the first people I worked with and they all made me feel comfortable and confident that the team was going to work hard for me. Everything was explained and any concerns...

~A G

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After meeting with several law firms, I chose the Spodek Law Group not only for their professionalism and experience, but for the personal attention given to me right from the initial consultation. It is important to recognize how crucial having the right legal team is when faced with potentially life altering events that impact families and the lives of loved...

~George Cherubini

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