Brad Thomson works at People’s Law Office as a civil rights and criminal defense lawyer. Joining the office in 2004, he worked for years as a paralegal and investigator before becoming an attorney.
Brad’s work at People’s Law Office has focused on civil rights litigation against the Chicago Police, including suits for wrongful conviction, false arrest, police shootings and other cases of police brutality. In addition, he has represented prisoners and criminal defendants, focusing on cases of people charged with crimes based on their political activity.
Brad was part of the legal team in Vodak v. City of Chicago, a class action lawsuit against the City of Chicago which settled for $6.2 million. That case dealt with 800 demonstrators opposing War in Iraq who were wrongfully arrested by the Chicago Police Department. Other notable cases he has worked on include the “NATO 3,” the First Amendment challenge brought by Occupy Chicago activists and the defense of Muhammad Salah, who was charged with material support for terrorism for providing aid to Palestinian communities.
Brad’s legal interests also include aspects of animal law, particularly the criminalization of animal rights activists. He has studied and written about the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA) and has worked on cases defending animal liberation activists who were charged under the AETA.
In addition to being a lawyer, Brad is a licensed private investigator (Illinois License #115.002345). He brings those skills and experience to each case he works on, locating evidence and witnesses essential to the case.
Brad also has a background in political organizing, having participated in social movements fighting against militarism, economic inequality, environmental destruction, policing and the prison-industrial complex. He has provided legal support to radical and progressive social justice organizations as part of his legal work. Brad is an active member of the National Lawyers Guild (NLG) and was named the NLG’s “Legal Worker of the Year” in 2011.