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Our Story

With a team of highly trained, board-certified private investigators, Zelaya & Associates, Private Investigators delivers unparalleled professionalism and expertise in providing top-notch investigative services. Former members of law enforcement and military personnel make up our team, all whom retired in good standing with their respective agencies, and who's credibility in the industry is second to none. We have extensive experience in providing investigative services to a wide range of clients, including individuals, businesses, and law firms. Our team is committed to achieving the best possible outcome for our clients, while maintaining the highest standards of ethics and confidentiality.

We are proud to be Board Certified as Criminal Defense Investigators through the Criminal Defense Investigation Training Counsel and Board Certified in Forensic Death Investigations through the Association for Forensic Investigations. Our Investigators undergo 20 hours of continuing education every year in Forensics, Crime Scene Investigation, Homicide Investigations as well as Criminal Defense and Legal Topics in order to stay up to date on changes in the investigation industry. 

When its answers you seek, look no further than Zelaya & Associates, Private Investigators


Masters of Investigation, Defenders of Truth (sm)

Board Certified Criminal Defense Investigator
Cold Case Foundation
Board Certified Forensic Death Investigator


With our investigative resources, we’ve gained the reputation for being the best Private Investigation Firm for Criminal Defense, Complex Investigations and Forensic Death Investigations.  A combination of skilled experts and the latest technology is the reason Zelaya & Associates, Private Investigators is able to ensure the best possible outcome for each case it takes on.

Our firm has great working relationships with Forensic Labs throughout the region which allows us the ability to provide DNA, Gun Shot Residue, Trace Evidence and Toxicology Testing Services for cases. In addition we also utilize 3D Mapping and Photography which provides us the ability to create Forensic Animation utilizing the FARO suite of products. 

Because of the time and effort it takes to properly handle complex matters and build relationships with our clients, we do not accept every case. Please schedule a complimentary consultation, as this will allow both client and Investigator to determine whether our firm is the right place for you.

 Scales of Justice

Criminal Defense Investigations

Criminal Defense Investigations is our specialty.  With decades of experience in  Public Safety Operations and Investigations, Zelaya & Associates are experts in  criminal investigations, crime scene analysis, evidence collection/preservation, and law enforcement use of force.  Our investigators will painstakingly examine  every facet of your client's case to ensure due process and assist you in developing a strong defense.  We know how and why law enforcement and prosecutors do what they do because  we  have investigated hundreds of cases since 2011. Let us show you how Zelaya & Associates, Private Investigators can make a difference in your case. We have over 10,000 documented hours of homicide investigations for the defense, and over 40 years of combined experience. Our firm is a registered Due Process Vendor with both the Justice Administration Commission as well as the Criminal Justice Act (Federal). In addition to investigation services, we also provide Use of Force Expert Testimony, Crime Scene/Forensic Reconstruction and Gang Evidence Consultation. Our firm is also proud to work with The Innocence Clinic at The University of Miami providing Post Conviction Investigation services. 

Crime Scene Tape

Crime Scene Reconstruction

Our team has decades of experience with reviewing the physical aspects of a crime in concert with the sequence of events. By reconstructing a crime scene, we may assist to determine what could and could not have happened in the commission of a crime. Crime scene reconstruction considers any and all evidence recovered, the physical layout of the space and ties in other forensic disciplines such as toxicology, bloodstain pattern analysis, firearms testing, gunshot residue testing and DNA.

When two items or substances come together, they behave and interact in ways that tell a story (Locard’s Principle) that experienced forensic criminalistics experts can read. Our scientists are here to analyze your evidence, visit the crime scene if needed, write reports, provide comprehensive case review, consultation, and expert testimony.

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Equivocal Death Investigations

Equivocal Death Investigations are those inquiries that are open to interpretation pending further investigation of the facts, victimology and circumstances of the event.  The death might appear suspicious or questionable based upon what is presented. For example, a death appears to be suicide but may actually be murder staged to appear to as suicide. An Equivocal Death Investigation should include an extensive and thoroughly documented analysis of the body recovery scene, the autopsy, the forensic evidence, laboratory tests, and the victimology and behavioral history of the deceased. This detailed and complex investigative process can aid in determining the manner of death which is different than the cause of death. “Cause of death” is a term used to indicate the medical cause of death. It lists the diseases or injuries that caused death. “Manner of death” is the way to categorize death. For example, a person’s cause of death might be asphyxiation but the manner of death might be accidental or suicide.

Meet the Team

Case Studies

Through our case studies, we hope to portray various examples of past successes in all kinds of cases, large and small. Cases are also a great way for prospective clients to learn more about the way our Private Investigation Firm operates. Zelaya & Associates, Private Investigators go the extra mile to make sure our clients are completely satisfied with what we provide.

Crime Scene Investigation
Crime Scene Investigator
Police Cars

State of Florida v. Simmons

After being charged with First Degree Murder, this client decided to work with Zelaya & Associates to get to the bottom of the murder charge. After a brief consultation meeting, it was clear that an experienced investigative plan would  accurately provide the client with all the answers they were looking for. We were right - after a thorough investigation our client was found Not Guilty of all charges and justice was served.

State of Florida v. Williams

Our firm was retained after a client was arrested on 1st Degree Murder charges ,after allegedly killing her boyfriend. Our investigators immediately got to work interviewing witnesses, many of whom could not keep their stories straight, as well as collecting certified felony convictions for impeachment purposes. During the investigation we uncovered that the firearm used in the murder had a serious defect which allowed it to fire without the trigger being pulled, which matched up to the clients statement and testimony of an accidental shooting. A jury saw the evidence and our client was found not guilty. 

State of Florida v. Joseph

Our client was charged with 3 counts of 1st Degree Murder and was facing the Death Penalty for a crime he did not commit. Zelaya & Associates was retained by the defendants court appointed counsel and immediately got to work on the investigation. From trips to tough areas in Miami, to the West Coast of Florida, we interviewed numerous witnesses, examined hours of video and evidence and drafted pages of investigative reports. After an exhausting 2 years investigation, not only did the Prosecutor drop the Death Penalty, our client was cleared of all charges and is now a free man, while the actual suspects are now behind bars.

Contact Us

Office Address

5360 Curry Ford Road

Orlando, Florida 32812


Phone: 407.634.2111

Opening Hours

Mon - Fri

8:30 am – 5:30 pm


9:00 am – 5:00 pm



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