Alvin Olinsky

Alvin Olinksy Season 5 (Original).jpg

Alvin Olinksy Season 3 (Original).jpg

Alvin Olinksy Season 1 (Original).jpg

Full Name Alvin Olinsky
Alias Frank, Pulaski, Carl Jacobs, Alvin Obolensky
Status Deceased
Information
Affiliation Chicago Police Department
Department Intelligence Unit
Occupation Police Officer
Rank Senior Detective
Relationships Meredith Olinsky (wife, separated)
Linda Sovana (former lover)
Family Lexi Olinsky (daughter)
Michelle Sovana (daughter)
Friends Hank Voight (best friend)
Antonio Dawson (good friend)
Appearances
Seasons 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
First Appearance Stepping Stone
Last Appearance Homecoming
Portrayed by Elias Koteas

Detective Alvin Olinsky worked undercover for the Chicago Police Department Intelligence Unit. He was partners with Officer Adam Ruzek.

Biography

At one point, Alvin had served in the U.S. Army as part of a Special Response Team in Italy, implied to be the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team. It is revealed that he had seen some action in Italy while serving there.

Later on, he joined the CPD working alongside Sergeant Hank Voight, Jimmy Shi, and Ruzek's father Bob. Alvin and Voight shared a close partnership and friendship.

He married a woman named Meredith Olinsky. Alvin mentions Meredith that the day, he learned she was pregnant that he got shot. However he survived and the bullet that nearly killed him was made into a necklace. Alvin and his wife later had a daughter named Lexi. Due to his job, Alvin and his wife had a strained status. At some point, he went undercover and slept with Linda Sovana while investigating her brother. Unknown to him, he conceived a daughter Michelle.

Alvin previously worked in organized crime investigating the case between the triad leader Dennis Lee but the latter eluded him. Alvin also try to take down another crime boss Oskar Bembenek after trying to turn his mistresses against him.

Season 1

It is revealed in Now Is Always Temporary, that Alvin had an estranged relationship with his wife, who had made him move into the garage. Despite the tension in his marriage, Alvin still loved her (vice-versa) and maintained a close relationship with his daughter, Lexi. When Lexi was blamed for having marijuana in her locker (stored there by a boyfriend), Alvin was quick to help his daughter out. Even though she was suspended from school, the two had a father/daughter dance in the drive-way.

When an ill-fated party ended in a gang member's shooting death, Lexi was the only witness. Alvin tried to prevent Lexi from becoming a witness as it would endanger her life. However, when the shooter refused to confess, Lexi volunteered.

During Conventions, Alvin tells Halstead that he served in the army and Halstead tells him of his service in the Rangers.

In My Way , Alvin talks to Antonio about how it must be hard for him to be in the same room with a gangster who abducted his son. Antonio lashes out at him for mentioning this because the monster was responsible for killing his partner and putting his family in peril. The next day, Antonio apologizes to Alvin for his outburst while Alvin lets it slide because he can understand that and they make up.

As of The Docks, Alvin finds Antonio has survived the shot but is critically wounded. Alvin and Voight want to kill Pulpo instead of capturing him, since he hurt their comrade. After Pulpo is captured, Alvin and Hank prepare to get revenge on the gangster by dropping him in the lake. The pair are beat Pulpo severely and chain him to cement. However, Jay arrives to stop the two detectives them, moments before sinking Pulpo into Lake Michigan wearing a "Chicago necklace" - chains around his neck linked to cement blocks. Jay pleads to Voight to not do it and the Sergeant refuses to give in - until Olinsky (has an epiphany) sides with Halstead. Pulpo will receive his day in court. The intense aftermath sends Olinsky back to the arms of his wife - he wants to restart their marriage.

Season 2

During Call It Macaroni, Alvin is angry that crime boss Oskar Bembenek is being released, despite past DNA being found on him. Alvin later mentions to his squad that he knew the mistress of Oskar and was trying to get him to turn on Bembenek but she was killed. Alvin later meets with Bembenek and threatens him if he was involved in a heist. Alvin receives word from his informant of urgent news on Jay. At the end, Alvin tells Jay a $100,000 bounty has been placed on him by Oskar Bembenek.

In Get My Cigarettes, Alvin continues to warn Jay who thinks nothing of it, Alvin tells him that a bounty being placed on him and Voight. This news surprises Jay and Adam who had no idea about this and I asked him how he got through it but they receive a little answer.

As of The Weigh Station, Alvin and Hank visit a hit man to get him to pretend to take Jay from Oskar’s man Shosak. After the hit man has his own son taken, Alvin and the rest of the units do their best to take him down. After the hitman and Shosak are arrested, Alvin visits Oskar and gloats on how his man will be in prison. Alvin tells Oskar that the brother of his late mistress is awaiting trial at Gen Pop. When Oskar states that he is not in that prison, Alvin reveals that he has had him transferred, so the vengeful brother can get him. When the horrified crime boss protest this, a satisfied Alvin tells him bluntly it’s done and watches when he’s taken away. During Called in Dead, Alvin comes home with flowers to give his wife only to discover Meredith has been taken hostage by two thug brothers Jamal and Jesse Selley. The men demand that Alvin go back to the district and retrieve their drugs or they will kill his wife. Alvin goes with one of them Jamal to retrieve the drugs, being told not to tell his fellows or his wife dies. Alvin see Millie goes inside to get only the drugs but in reality warns his fellows and retrieves a gun. Once back in the car he shows Jamal the drugs before shooting him dead. He and the cops then go to his house, where Alvin sends the “confirmation“ to Jesse who prepared to kill Meredith. However, Hank arrives to stop him, distracting him long enough for Alvin to sneak up behind him and disarm him. They proceed to bring in Jesse to the precinct, where Alvin taunts about the death of his brother. It is soon revealed that Evan Norman, a crooked public defender is the reason the thugs found his house and the one who gave orders.

In An Honest Woman, Alvin takes control of the unit after Voight is kidnapped for the fortune in his safe. He shuts down any questions made Kevin and Adam because their Sergeant is gone. When going over the cameras, they discover that he was taken along with Olive Morgan Voight, the pregnant girlfriend of his son. Once they locate him Alvin joins Hank in finding the friends that Olive had told. Alvin participated in Hank interrogating them until getting names.

During Disco Bob, while investigating a burglary and murder Alvin takes note of Bob Ruzek arguing with Voight. He later tells Adam the reason his father Bob has beef with Voight.

In The Three Gs, Alvin has lunch with his daughter Lexi and his partner Lindsay. They discuss the future of Lexi after her graduation with Alvin trying to persuade her to become a cop like him but she refuses. Lexi still has to go bidding him goodbye for now but he and Lindsay are called in for a case. They go to an abandoned warehouse where they find several dead kind of girls. Alvin goes outside when he gets into a shoot out with the kidnapper who is able to get away after Alvin is forced to tend to the girl who got caught in it. Because of this display, Alvin wants nothing more than to make the shooter pay with his squad worried about him. A father of one of the kidnapped girls appears and tells them about a crime boss named Dennis Lee who is indirectly responsible. Intelligence soon find the man responsible is the nephew of Dennis and where he’s hanging out. After capturing the man they interrogate him with Alban nearly punishing him for his actions before the man gives up the answers. During the case,Antonio told Ruzek that Olinsky already had full pension but refused to retire. Soon the squad are able to apprehend one of the gangsters who Dennis was dealing with but he turns out to have been tricked as well but a deals made. Alvin is further driven when he meets the parents of the dead girls who all wish him the best in apprehending those responsible. When he arrives home, Alvin goes crazy so much that Meredith calls Hank to calm him down. Alvin later participates in a shootout between the two gangs and nearly kills Dennis Lee but Hank talks him out of it. At the end, he is calmer and invites Jason, the boyfriend of Lexi over to the house. He tells his wife of Jason and the family have a pleasant dinner, with Lexi smiling at him.

In Born Into Bad News , Alvin is contacted from a woman named Linda Sovana from his past undercover assignments who is hostile to him because he used her. At the end, it is revealed the Alvin has another daughter named Michelle Sovana born from his affair with Linda. Michelle contacts Alvin from the juvenile hall center, asking for help. He is quite shocked to learn this and fall silent.

Season 3

As of Life is Fluid, Alvin is still stunned at having another child, though decided to bond with her, since she needed him. Telling Trudy about this, Alvin is able to pull strings and get Michelle out of jail. Outside the Juvenile Hall Center, Alvin meets Michelle for the first time. Here’s an awkward meeting before Michelle tells him she appreciates his acts and asks for money, to which he gives her $40. She then promises to keep in touch with him.

During Natural Born Storyteller, Alvin is once more approached by Michelle who needs more money. Alvin tries to help her with starting over, though she rejects this and walks off.  At the end, Alvin meets Michelle who tells him that she was robbed and offers him a chance to be her father in the moment but then rejects this. Not wanting to play mind games with her, Alvin gives Michelle the money and wishes her luck, as she nearly storms off. However, Alvin sees her cries and tells her that he is trying and if she allows him in, then they can have a better start.

In Actual Physical Violence, a desperate father named Joe Frazier arrives at the precinct searching for his daughter and holds Mouse hostage until she is found. The unit investigate him and find he has a building with cameras and soon discover caged women in the basement. Alvin and Antonio both agree on wanting to punish the casanova after finding he tortured the women with a chimney poker. After finding the kidnapper, they allow Hank to interrogate him. Soon Intelligence Unit raid the house and find the leader dead with bullets, but Sarah is nowhere to be seen. They eventually reach the train station, where people are running away. The unit find Sarah on a train covered in blood, armed with a gun and contemplating suicide. Erin speaks with her but Sarah refuses to live with the pain and the unit has Voight get her father who calms her down. After the case, Alvin arrives at home to have dinner with his family. Alvin soon reveals the existence of his other daughter born from his affair while on assignment. They are stunned to hear this with Meredith even telling him that he needs to leave while Lexi is reduced to tears.

In Debts of the Past, Alvin talks with Antonio about his new development while the latter was surprised to learn that Alvin has a new daughter. Alvin is approached by his wife at work who encourages him to get a paternity test to confirm whether Michelle is really his daughter before he makes it a irreversible effect on their family. Alvin considers her words. After being told by Greg how to do the test he goes to meet with Michelle, who was training under Antonio at his training center. As he gets to his car, he has a sense that it may have been rigged so he decides to take a taxi. He arrived at the center where he finds Michelle training, after Michelle conveniently leaves her mouth-guard which contains her saliva Alvin use it to get the test. At the precinct, it was confirmed that his car was indeed rigged to explode because of a pipe bomb being placed underneath. The culprit is revealed to be a man who was previously put away by Hank and Alvin years ago and believe that they were responsible for stealing his money and Alvin is upset that Hank would accuse him of doing such a thing when he went to pay Hank and Camille back the money he borrowed. It is then revealed that the beef was one of the low level grunts who used the money to support his family. When the gangster is found, they use them as bait to lower the crime lord and are able to apprehend him. Alvin quickly stop Hank from trying to kill the crime Lord because it wasn’t the right thing to.

In You Never Know Who's Who, Alvin is visited by Michelle at the precinct where she gives him cookies. Alvin is excited to hear that it is peanut butter cookies, as Michelle announces that she likes them too. The results later come back in, though it's never confirmed she is his daughter or not because he threw the results away to help the lost girl. At the end, the DNA results for Michelle come back in but it’s never confirmed whether she is his daughter because he threw away the paper.

In If We Were Normal, Alvin accompanied Lindsay and Hank to the silos, along with a victim of a kidnapping rapist. After finding the hiding place from his “wife”, the unit find a dead woman and Alvin is upset. During interrogations, Alvin puts fear into the man by holding him at gunpoint and making him beg for his life. Alvin later speaks with one of the pregnant victims who plans to keep her child, he gives her a necklace holding a bullet that nearly killed him.

During The Cases that Need to be Solved, the unit investigate a shooting of a six year old. Alvin and Kevin arrive to the house where they find Miles, the uncle of the child confronting the shooter Jordan while armed with a gun. Alvin does his best to talk Miles down, soon he is successful and he is given the gun. When Kevin takes Jordan out of the house, Miles prepares to surrender to the cops. Knowing that Miles was trying to do right by his family and feeling sympathetic, Alvin gets rid of the bullets and tells the surprised young man to leave. When Miles tries to run out the front, Alvin stops him and tells him to go out the back so no one would think he was involved and he does so quickly.

Season 4

The season started with the transfer of Kim Burgess to Intelligence after Antonio took up a job as an investigator with Peter Stone. Kim was paired with Alvin by Voight, and he did not take a clear liking to her. She is happy and excited to work with him but he often brushes her off. Platt tells Kim that she thinks it's because he doesn't think women work well in the force because he was there when women were first allowed to join in 1974. Kim is surprised by this but continues to try and earn his trust and take his criticism, something he keeps doing However, he later tells Voight he doesn't work to with Kim because she's too bubbly and he knows the job will "rip her heart out" and he doesn't want to be there when it happens. Voight says she's very good at her job and she's earned her chance to figure that out for herself. Olinsky continues criticising Kim and at the end of her first shift, asks her why she thinks she deserves to be in Intelligence when there are others more deserving of the job. She tells him of her arrest records and achievements, to which he replies that good detectives don't boast. She is irritated and tells him she does and he should be prepared for her.

In Some Friend, Alvin is conflicted over a case with an old friend accused of murdering a girl. Despite orders from the commander to stay away from the case Alvin goes to meet with one of his other friends in soon learns the cruel truth. Alvin brings his friend Freddy to the precinct and the commander threatens him with 10 days suspension but allows him to speak with McCoy. Alvin gets a confession and he ends up losing his badge for 10 days and goes into counseling.

In a later case, Olinsky and Kim end up trapping themselves in a case after Kim failed to pursue a suspect who'd given the wrong number. She apologizes and he says she should because it was her fault. She is angered and Olinsky again criticizes her. However, on a pursuit on foot, Olinsky ends up in the woods and one of the suspects pulls a gun and is seconds from shooting him when Kim tackles him and saves Olinsky. Olinsky thanks her in the end.

During Favor, Affection, Malice or Ill-Will, Alvin goes undercover as a hit man. Alvin feels conflicted in the case because if it’s on status as a father and he knows how the man feels to go to such lengths for his child. After the state attorney puts pressure on him Alvin is forced to bring the man in after catching him in the act. After the case, Alvin calls in his daughter Lexi just to see her and tells her that he loves her and they share a hug in the process. At Molly's, Alvin is approached by the state attorney who apologizes for giving him a hard time but Alvin lets it slide because he has two daughters of his own.

In Emotional Proximity, Alvin's daughter, Lexi died in the hospital after a fire at the Kimball Factory. A crossover with One Chicago showed Alvin asking Chief Boden to go back in for Lexi. They do and recover her, but Will Halstead tells Alvin she has burns on 60% of her body. They are hopeful until Lexi goes into heart and organ failure, after which Will tells Alvin she won't make it. Lexi dies with Alvin and her mother by her side at the age of 19. Alvin is angered and goes back to work to find out who did this. When they find the man, Alvin is clear that he wants to kill the man. Voight stops him.


In Army of One, Alvin goes undercover as a sex offender when a vigilante starts killing sex offenders by burning them alive. When the criminal comes after him, his team are able to catch before he could commit the act.

Season 5

In Allegiance, Olinsky's DNA is found on the body of Bingham, the man who Voight killed in revenge for Bingham killing his son Justin. Olinsky is later arrested for murder, and while in prison is stabbed by an inmate.

In Homecoming, Olinsky died in hospital, after significant blood loss from the stabbing. He is avenged by Voight, who shoots and kills the man responsible for setting up Olinsky's death. The police force pay tribute to Al, despite Meredith not wanting him to attend the funeral, Voight secretly attended and paid respect to his longtime friend and partner.

Season 6

This series of events, unfortunately, raises an imminent suspicion unto Voight, during which he is temporarily discharged for the shootout. Olinsky's reputation, however, remains tainted, even after his funeral. When Voight returns to duty, after finding a security video that proves the shot was justified, the first thing he asks for from Deputy Katherine Brennan is a letter of exoneration for Olinsky; this is not signed until Bad Boys.

Physical appearance

Olinsky was typically seen in a casual suit jacket, jeans and a shirt.

He was hardly seen without a cap or hat of some sort. Underneath this cap, he is shown to be balding.

Personality

Alvin has an unwavering loyalty to his closest friend and longtime partner Voight and will do whatever he asks even off the books. His loyalty was well placed because Hank defended him many times, as when Hank was kidnapped by robbers, Al acted as brief commander and had them worked to find him. Hank also attended Al's funeral, despite being requested not to.

Like Hank, Al had his own sense of justice and sometimes took matters into his own hands off-book. A hardened man, who spent time in the military, Alvin would use methods that were aggressive but not as Hank's but he still was a harsh man who worked hard to achieve his goal. Also like Hank, he was dedicated to the job and he refused to retire, despite having a full pension. He was an expert at undercover stakeouts. His dedication was evident by the fact that he wore adult diapers to make sure he didn't miss his targets. This began after a particularly nasty past incident where a B&E team got away when he went to relieve himself. Regardless, Alvin has a good heart, as he allowed a young man who confronted the shooter of his nephew to escape and when he showed empathy to the families of slain girls.

Al was estranged from his wife, largely due to the stress of his job often making him detached. He still loves his wife and stayed in the garage to be near her. He did not hesitate to go to the precinct and take money out of evidence to pay off her kidnappers. He also made sure to make the kidnappers pay for attacking his wife. Al also loves his daughter Lexi doing his best to make time for her and not hesitating to come to her defense when she needed him, something she appreciated. He was very sad when Lexi died of her wounds from a fire nearly attacking the man responsible until he was stopped by Hank. When he discovered he had another daughter named Michelle, he was quite shocked to learn this but did his best to make a spot for her in his life. Even though he got a DNA test for her, he chose not to see the results deciding to be a father figure to her to better her life at the cost of being separated from his family. Alvin showed Michelle the same care that he showed Lexi, something she appreciated and she came to accept him.

Alvin had a rocky relationship with some of the younger members in his unit. This is largely due to most of my them being inexperienced and cocky. However, he proved that he cared for them because Alvin came to their aid in many ways, helping them be better at the job. At his funeral, they all mourned him.

Relationships

Family

Meredith Olinsky

Lexi Olinsky

Lexi is Alvin’s daughter.

It is shown as they have a good relationship as Alvin tells her that he stays in the garage because he wants to stay near her and her mother. Lexi was touched by this even more so when Alvin wanted to make time for her by going to a dance. When she is blamed for bringing drugs in the school, Alvin immediately comes down to defend her and in spite of her begging him not to confront her boyfriend he does so anyway. Although upset and becoming an outcast because of having a cop of a father, Lexi remained touched that he would look out for her and they have a makeshift dance in the driveway.

When Lexi was starting to graduate from school, Alvin wanted her to have the best future. However, he realizes that she has to find her own path and he cannot always be overprotective as before. Indeed he invited her boyfriend over for dinner and spoke highly of him in front of Meredith.

Lexi was notably disturbed and hurt by her father having an affair and conceived another child. Alvin told Lexi that he needs her to stay on his side because it would destroy him if she turned on him forever.

Michelle Sovana

Michelle is the presumed second daughter of Alvin.

Michelle was presumably conceived from an affair Alvin had while on an undercover assignment, where he helped bring down the cousin of her mother. Alvin did not know about her for nearly 15 years until she called him from the juvenile hall center.

He was very disturbed at the thought of having another child but nonetheless did his best to help her out. To that end, he bailed her out of Juvie and met with her for the first time. He tried to hug her but she awkwardly stopped him only thanking him for helping her and promised to contact him later.

In the next meeting, it was a little bit turbulent because Michelle lashed out at Alvin for not being there for her when she was growing up. Regardless, she came around after he promised to be there now.

The next time, we see Alvin and Michelle things are a bit better with Alvin growing to care for her like he does Lexi and doing his best to make a spot for her. Despite getting a DNA test at the insistence of his wife, Alvin refused to look at the results and decided to help Michelle out anyway whether he was her biological father or not. Without any hesitation he also signed her legal guardian papers even if he was kicked out of his house by his wife.

In return, Michelle starts to appreciate everything he's done.

Friends

Hank Voight

Alvin’s closest friend.

They have known each other for many decades and were partners in the precinct. Alvin serves as the moral compass of Hank whenever his methods are shown to cross the line and the latter would listen. The peer care very deeply for each other as Alvin refuse to lie on Hank whenever the higher ups were investigating him

Antonio Dawson

Antonio is Alvin’s good friend and coworker.

As experienced Detectives, Alvin and Antonio get along very well and respect each other.

When Antonio was forced to work with a criminal that once kidnapped his son Alvin spoke to him about it but Antonio lashed out at him for it. The next day, Antonio apologize for his actions but Alvin let it slide

Jay Halstead

A good friend and fellow member of the unit.

As a fellow veteran, Alvin and Jay get along well, despite opposing methods. When a hit was placed on Jay’s head Alvin immediately warn them of the danger he was in.

Notes & Trivia

  • Like most police personnel, Olinsky carried a Glock 17.
    • Unlike most police personnel, he holstered his gun in the "12 O'Clock" position, rather than by the hip.
    • He also carried a Smith & Wesson 36 in an ankle holster as a backup.
  • Olinsky is so far the only Intelligence Unit member to not have changed his service vehicle, having consistently driven a 2005 Dodge Magnum throughout his time in the series.
  • His badge number was 50037.
  • Olinsky's radio code was 5021 Charlie, but he normally went by just 5021.
    • This may suggest he shared radio codes with Adam Ruzek, because he has used the same code before.
  • His favorite type of cookie was peanut butter, same as Michelle.
  • Similar to Hank, Alvin has lost a child to murder.

Appearances

Season 1 Appearances
"Stepping Stone" "Wrong Side of the Bars" "Chin Check" "Now Is Always Temporary" "Thirty Balloons"
"Conventions" "The Price We Pay" "Different Mistakes" "A Material Witness" "At Least It's Justice"
"Turn the Light Off" "8:30 PM" "My Way" "The Docks" "A Beautiful Friendship"
Season 2 Appearances
"Call It Macaroni" "Get My Cigarettes" "The Weigh Station" "Chicken, Dynamite, Chainsaw" "An Honest Woman"
"Prison Ball" "They'll Have to Go Through Me" "Assignment of the Year" "Called in Dead" "Shouldn't Have Been Alone"
"We Don't Work Together Anymore" "Disco Bob" "A Little Devil Complex" "Erin's Mom" "What Do You Do"
"What Puts You On That Ledge" "Say Her Real Name" "Get Back to Even" "The Three Gs" "The Number of Rats"
"There's My Girl" "Push The Pain Away" "Born Into Bad News"
Season 3 Appearances
"Life is Fluid" "Natural Born Storyteller" "Actual Physical Violence" "Debts of the Past" "Climbing Into Bed"
"You Never Know Who's Who" "A Dead Kid, a Notebook and a Lot of Maybes" "Forget My Name" "Never Forget I Love You" "Now I'm God"
"Knocked The Family Right Out" "Looking Out For Stateville" "Hit Me" "The Song of Gregory Williams Yates" "A Night Owl"
"The Cases that Need to be Solved" "Forty-Caliber Bread Crumb" "Kasual with a K" "If We Were Normal" "In A Duffel Bag"
"Justice" "She's Got Us" "Start Digging"
Season 4 Appearances
"The Silos" "Made a Wrong Turn" "All Cylinders Firing" "Big Friends, Big Enemies" "A War Zone"
"Some Friend" "300,000 Likes" "A Shot Heard Around the World" "Don't Bury This Case" "Don't Read the News"
"You Wish" "Sanctuary" "I Remember Her Now" "Seven Indictments" "Favor, Affection, Malice or Ill-Will"
"Emotional Proximity" "Remember the Devil" "Little Bit of Light" "Last Minute Resistance" "Grasping for Salvation"
"Fagin" "Army of One" "Fork in the Road"
Season 5 Appearances
"Reform" "The Thing About Heroes" "Promise" "Snitch" "Home"
"Fallen" "Care Under Fire" "Politics" "Monster" "Rabbit Hole"
"Confidential" "Captive" "Chasing Monsters" "Anthem" "Sisterhood"
"Profiles" "Breaking Point" "Ghosts" "Payback" "Saved"
"Allegiance" "Homecoming"

Videos

Gallery

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.