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National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Board Illinois Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

National Trial Lawyers Association


Tony Thedford is a courtroom veteran. He has spent more than 25 years as a Criminal Defense Lawyer. Designated as an Illinois Super Lawyer in 2012, 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022 and as a Top 100 Trial Lawyer by the National Trial Lawyers Association, he has been recognized by his peers as an exceptional practitioner. 
Attorney Thedford is a leader in his field.  He is a Past-President of the Illinois Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and serves on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. 

Attorney Thedford is a trusted voice in the legal community. Mr. Thedford frequently appears as a Legal Expert on ABC 7 news in Chicago, WGN Channel 9 News Chicago, and nationally on the Black News Channel.  Attorney Thedford is the voice that these sources turn to when seeking expertise on local and national matters involving police violence and reform as well as other hot button topics impacting the Criminal Legal System and the daily lives of Chicagoans.


Southern College, 1992

University of Alabama School of Law, 1996


Attorney Thedford has made thousands of appearances in courtrooms throughout Illinois and neighboring jurisdictions. He prides himself on the detail that he pays to the individual client. Representing a range of clients, he manages to aggressively advocate for them in the courtroom, while acknowledging that whatever the issue, this is the most important case in his client’s life and must be treated that way.  His clients are the only priority.

Attorney Thedford is a 1996 graduate of the University of Alabama School of Law. He arrived in Chicago that same year and began his practice as a Cook County Public Defender. It is in this capacity that Attorney Thedford honed his advocacy skills and trial acumen representing thousands of indigent clients during his 8 years with the Office. 

Attorney Thedford founded his own practice in 2005, focusing in the areas of Criminal Defense and Civil Rights Litigation. Since establishing his own practice, Attorney Thedford has represented hundreds of clients in state and federal matters, and has expanded his practice to encompass varied forms of civil litigation, including corporate and business matters. He is licensed in the State of Illinois, and is a member of the Federal trial bar for the Northern and Central Districts of Illinois. Attorney Thedford also serves as an Adjunct Professor at the DePaul College of Law. He is a member of the Criminal Justice Act Panel for the Federal Defender in the Northern District of Illinois.


Most recently, Attorney Thedford is well-known for his representation of the family of Calvin Cross.   Calvin was killed by Chicago Police Officers in 2011.  In addition to achieving a 2-million-dollar settlement on behalf of Calvin’s son, Attorney Thedford worked for years after the settlement to bring the offending police officers to justice. These efforts resulted in a re-opening of the police investigation that originally cleared the officers. These officers were ultimately disciplined with a recommendation that they be terminated.


Because the trust that each client places in him is paramount, Attorney Thedford considers every case his most important. From the simple traffic case to complex federal litigation, Attorney Thedford will fight for you and your interests. He believes that he only succeeds if he has pursued every path to justice for his clients. Attorney Thedford wants to speak with you about how he can help you.

Testimonials Thedford


"Saved me in midst of my storm."

Several years ago was the worst time in my life but Attorney Thedford saved me in midst of my storm and believe me, it was one.   -G.S.

"Highly recommend his legal services."

I had a criminal case in the U S Federal court looking at major time being served in a Federal prison. My lawyer Attorney Tony Thedford with his supreme knowledge was able to get my sentence reduced to probation. Tony's expertise is surely worth every dollar. I would strongly recommend his legal services.     -L.T.

"Will give you the best representation you can ask for."

Tony is one of Chicago's best kept secrets, he would surprise many of you because of his laid back personality, he will give you the best representation you can ask for. He is a realistic fighter, enough said.    -B.B.

"Guidance, expertise, and civility are unparalleled."

Felony criminal accusations have the potential to drastically alter a person's life. Tony and his team were dedicated to ensuring that my rights were not violated and that my freedom was intact. He thoroughly explained the complex Cook County legal system and was committed to achieving my well-deserved not-guilty verdict. His guidance, expertise, and civility are unparalleled.    -T.M.

"My livelihood was at stake."

Attorney Thedford is extremely responsive and thoughtful in his practice. I was dealing with a time-sensitive matter and my livelihood was at stake. Not only was he understanding and helpful, but his level of communication, his professionalism, and his knowledge of the law exceeded expectations.    -A.T.

"Always available."

My wife and I had a hard time finding a lawyer that we felt comfortable with and were able to afford. I met with Tony and he took my case. He and his staff helped me and my family throughout our horrible experience, and he was always available for questions. Needless to say, I won my case and was vindicated.     -F.C.

"Could not have asked for a better advocate."

Tony Thedford represented me in a traffic court case in 2015. I could not have asked for a better advocate. Tony was very professional and prompt, and was able to get my case resolved quickly. He anticipated my questions, and was constantly offering reassurance throughout the process that the case would be resolved with no penalty on my part.  


Contact Attorney Thedford


Attorney Tony Thedford

(312) 614-0866; Ext. 1


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