Skip to main content

Jon Forrest Erickson

Criminal defense Attorney at Chicago, IL

4.6   14 reviews

also known as Jon F. Erickson

  • Licensed for 32 years
    State IL
    Acquired 1990
    Active and Authorized to Practice Law No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Jon

Learn Jon’s areas of practice.

Practice areas
  1. Criminal defense
    Aggressive, comprehensive criminal defense including 1st Degree Murder, Reckless Homicide, Drug Trafficing, all major felonies, Federal Drug Conspiracies, Federal White Collar Crimes

    33 years, 30,000 cases

  2. Civil rights
    Plaintiff's Section 1983, Federal Police Misconduct, including Police Brutality, Excessive Force, Wrongful Convictions, Unlawful Search & Seizure and Malicious Prosecution

    22 years, 500 cases

  3. DUI and DWI
    Comprehensive DUI representation including all misdemeanors and felonies, Reckless Homicide and Felony Aggravated DUI

    33 years, 10,000 cases

     Jon F. Erickson has been a successful lead trial attorney in some of Chicago’s most challenging courtrooms for the past 24 years. As an author, litigator and advisor, Jon F. Erickson has developed an expertise in criminal defense and civil rights law and is considered a leader in DUI defense. 



     Jon F. Erickson has handled over 127 federal civil rights cases, 42 USC Sec. 1983, in the in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois and has secured millions of dollars in damage awards for his civil rights clients.



     Jon F. Erickson has obtained not-guilty verdicts in hundreds of criminal criminal cases -- many high profile cases. In November of 2010, Erickson & Oppenheimer, Ltd. obtained a Not Guilty on 1st Degree Murder for U.S.A. National Boxing Champion, Semajay Thomas and has since won a Not Guilty Jury Verdicts  in an “unheard-of” 3 consecutive 1st Degree Murder trials. 



     Jon F. Erickson has represented thousands of criminal defendants and has served as lead trial cousnel in thousands of bench and jury trials. Jon F. Erickson has obtained not-guilty verdicts in hundreds of criminal defense cases -- many high profile cases. In November of 2010, Erickson & Oppenheimer, Ltd. obtained a Not Guilty on 1st Degree Murder for U.S.A. National Boxing Champion, Semajay Thomas and has since won a Not Guilty Jury Verdicts  in an “unheard-of” 3 consecutive 1st Degree Murder trials. 



     Erickson honed his DUI trial skills as a lawyer with the Cook County Public Defender's Office where from 1991 to 1993 he handled thousands of DUI cases.     Since then, he has successfully defended hundreds of people accused of DUI, including the high-profile federal Section 1983 civil suit for false DUI arrest against Chicago DUI cop Richard Fiorito.  Erickson's work resulted the removal of the officer from the street, the mass dismissal of over 134 DUI cases in 2009, and a settlement of $450,000.



      In a federal drug conspiracy trial in Western Michigan, Erickson represented a man who a United States Federal District Judge Gordon J. Quist called “… probably the biggest drug dealer in the United States of America.” 



    Erickson served as a legislative aide to Illinois State Representative Larry McKeon, specializing in criminal and civil rights legislation and in 2003, served on Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s Transition Team and advised General Madigan on civil rights and domestic violence issues. He has guest-lectured on Illinois’ Hate Crime laws at the annual Illinois Victim’s Assistance Academy.  



     Erickson served on an advisory committee on civil rights issues to then Congressman Rahm Emanuel and from 2009 to the present, has served Congressman Mike Quigley in the same capacity.



     Erickson is currently working with state legislators to eliminate the iniequities in Illiniois's TASC and Drug Probation statutes.

Photos and videos

Contact Jon

Similar lawyers nearby

Erickson & Oppenheimer
223 West Jackson Blvd
Suite 200
Chicago, IL, 60606


4.6 / 5.0
  14 customer reviews
Posted by Jeremey | December 29, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Hiring Jon resulted in no criminal charges- PERIOD.
Choosing a lawyer (most especially a criminal one) is never easy. I'm glad I chose Erickson & Oppenheimer to represent me. He does not come cheap- but do you want a cheap lawyer? They were outstanding from start to finish. Jon represented me in a Federal Criminal case out of state, resulting in the DOJ- DA not moving forward with federal charges. This was the result I was hoping for. I can't thank him enough. Do yourself and your family a favor; if you find yourself in a bad situation, hire Jon- because you'll get a second chance with him defending you. I found him through word of mouth, and AVVO reviews. THANK YOU JON!! Sincerely, -JR Landon
Read less
Posted by anonymous | June 29, 2014
Jon Won my case so I guess that's enough said!!! Sometimes some reviews need not say more but I will give you some specifics. He is very busy and I sometimes felt that I needed to be informed of what was going on but, I will take that all day long when the result is a win. He definitely knows what he is doing and I certainly felt much more confident in front of the judge when he was standing next to me. He knows law and he won both parts of my dui case ,the civil which rescinded my suspension and the criminal which won my case and put an end to my nightmare. Everyone should do themselves a favor and end their search now and go with Jon. He lifted a huge weight off my shoulders and for that he is a winner in my book.. It felt good to win my case and have that officer leave the court room a loser.He knows law and he is worth the price!!!
Read less
Posted by Pat | April 18, 2014
Simply the Best
Jon Erickson reminds me Perry Mason in the courtroom. I met Jon back in 2007 when I was in court with someone who I had been going to court with for over a year (because of attorneys who kept postponing the case and asking for more money). Anyway, I saw Jon in action for two days and he fought really hard for his client. On day two I followed him out of the courtroom and asked him would he fight that hard for a black man? he said yes and handed me his card. Well, who would have known five years later that I would need him for my son. On March 12, 2014, my son was found "NOT GULITY" for charges of Battery to a Police Officer. The Officer lied and said that my son hit him, but the Officer was really the aggressor. The Officer beat my son up and tried to cover it up. I wish you could have been there to see how Jon worked that Officer and his partner over. It was a work of art. Jon is also very reasonable. He let me know what his fee would be upfront. That fee never changed and any additional fees were discussed thoroughly and still reasonable. As a parent of an African American male I realize that my son is GULITY until proven innocent. There are not many attorneys like Jon who don't look at skin color but the charges and how they can help. Or attorneys who will stand up to Law Enforcement. I'm making plans for a career change to become an attorney and work for him:) "Jon's SIMPLY the BEST, better than all the rest"
Read less
Posted by Dexter | March 21, 2013
The dream team
Jon was a great lawyer. They DESTROYED the witnesses and after an hour of deliberation the jury found me not guilty.
Posted by Jay | March 2, 2013
Top notch
Jon thoroughly reviewed my issue and explained my choices carefully. Was very responsive and stayed on top of the matter. Would work with him again and have recommended him to friends.
Posted by Elizabeth | February 17, 2013
First Rate Work
Jon is extremely knowledgeable and thorough. He and his team navigate the legal bureaucracy very well and I would recommend them to anyone.
Posted by Eric | February 16, 2013
ERICKSON & OPPENHEIMER - The Home of Fearless, Competent and Dependable Attorneys
The attorneys at ERICKSON & OPPENHEIMER are simply, THE BEST. From helping me navigate the seemingly overwhelming legal system - which they did with COMPASSION and EMPATHY- such as attending the various court appearances and keeping me fully informed on the complicated goings on. To helping me to thoroughly understand ALL MY OPTIONS and what recourse was available to me. They are DEPENDABLE, PATIENT, and RELIABLE when needed. And when representing me and advocating on my behalf they were the most DOGGED, UNRELENTING, and VIGOROUS attorneys I could have hoped for. I have FULL CONFIDENCE in their abilities and should the need arise again I would without hesitation use of their PROFESSIONAL SERVICES AGAIN.
Read less
Posted by Frank | January 29, 2013
Supportive and Reassuring Counsel
I have a fifteen year old daughter who has been doing poorly in school, is doing illegal drugs and staying out all night. Jon Erickson explained the law as it pertains to Juveniles with in the State of Illinois and the consequences and potential punishments for her behavior and is currently working with me and monitoring my situation to see if there any further remedies available to me so far seeking forced psychiatric help in the event , as he put it ...."she becomes a danger to herself or to others". More importantly, I received helpful information on non for profit organizations and contact people that might be helpful to my child and my family, for which I am grateful. Thank you !
Read less
Posted by Edward | January 29, 2013
DUI Genius
I got a DUI about a year ago and the court system was not a process I was very familiar with. After sitting through various court hearings and seeing first hand the representation being given to others I can honestly say I was one of the lucky ones to have found Mr. Erickson's law firm. From the first call his staff was very courteous and knowledgable. They gave me a free consult and answered my many questions about what to expect. They immeidately took action to get my license reinstated and Jon ripped the cop apart on the stand which was the best part of this whole process. LOL I was exrtremely happy with the outcome and all of the advise that was given to me by Mr. Erickson and his law partner Mr. Oppenhimer. Thanks Guys for all your hard work!
Read less
Posted by anonymous | January 28, 2013
DUI - Highly Recommend
He came highly recommended by a friend to help me with a DUI last year. I had never worked with or needed a lawyer before and he was very respectful of that. He was incredibly knowledgable about the processes and helped me both understand and get through it.
Posted by crunch | January 17, 2013
excellent attorney
Mr. Erickson was compassionate and seemed to understand that i was anxious and nervous about my case. It put me at ease to think that I was just not another case or source of revenue for him. He was forceful and skillfull in the courtroom and got me the best outcome for me. I would not be able to drive and support my family if Mr. Erickson had not been my attorney.
Read less
Posted by anonymous | February 15, 2013
Not afraid of the government. Will fight for you.
Whenever I talked to him I felt like he had things under control- and he did. He gave me great advice
Posted by anonymous | January 25, 2013
DUI Lawyers
over the summer I received my first DUI, and these guys helped me get my driving privileges back fast. I would certainly recommended them if your in the same boat I was!
Posted by Matthew | January 1, 2021
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Jon Erickson SUCKS
After signing a $5000 retainer fee, Jon showed up in court twice during a two-year trial period. He didn't file any motions; he didn't do much of anything. He got his money and basically ran. I could have gotten a better sentence representing myself. Ido not recommend this attorney; he should be disbarred!
View less reviews


  • Free Consultation 30 minutes
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Managing Partner
  • Erickson & Oppenheimer, Ltd.
  • 2003 - Present
  • Advisory Board Member Civil Rights Issues
  • Congressman Mike Quigley
  • 2009 - 2014
  • Managing Partner
  • Civil Rights Center
  • 2008 - 2010
  • Founding Partner
  • Law Offices of Jon F. Erickson
  • 2000 - 2003
  • Legislative Aid
  • Illinois State Representative Larry McKeon
  • 1997 - 2000
  • Assistant Public Defender
  • Public Defender Of Cook County, Il.
  • 1990 - 2001
  • Law Clerk
  • Attorney General Of Illinois
  • 1989 - 1989
  • Law Clerk
  • Mass, Miller & Josephson
  • 1988 - 1998
View all work experience


  • John Marshall Law School, Chicago
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1990
  • Trinity College, Dublin
  • Certificate of Completion
  • 1988
  • Northern Illinois University
  • BS - Bachelor of Science
  • 1985

Legal Cases

  • Sharp v. Dixmoor
  • $40 Million Settlement
  • People v. Jamal Summerize
  • Not Guilty
  • People v. Brad Barrett
  • Not Guilty
View all legal cases


  • American Society of Legal Advocates
  • Association Member
  • 2014 - Present
  • Illinois Association of Criminal Defense
  • Attorney Member
  • 2014 - Present
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association
  • Attorney Member
  • 2014 - Present
  • Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago
  • Attorney Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • Federal Trial Bar
  • Member
  • 2006 - Present
  • National Police Accountability Project
  • Member
  • 2006 - Present
  • Illinois State Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2003 - Present
  • Cook County Bar Association
  • Attorney Member
  • 1991 - Present
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Attorney Member
  • 1990 - Present
  • Chicago Council of Lawyers
  • Attorney Member
  • 2010 - 2013
  • Congressman Rahm Emanuel's Advisory Board
  • Board Member
  • 2003 - 2009
  • Cook County State's Attorney's Domestic Violence Advisory Board
  • Board Member
  • 1995 - 1996
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • Spanish
  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • National Trial Lawyers
  • 2016
  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • National Trial Lawyers Association
  • 2015
  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • National Trial Lawyers
  • 2015
  • Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyers in Illinois
  • American Society of Legal Advocates
  • 2014
  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • National Trial Lawyers
  • 2014
  • Top 100 DUI Attorneys in Chicagoland Area
  • The National Advocacy for DUI Defense
  • 2014
  • Best Brief Award
  • National Moot Court Competition
  • 1988
View all awards


  • Grab Magazine
  • Street Search
  • 2014
  • Illinois Compiled Statutes
  • Illinois Immediate Protection Act
  • 1997

Speaking Engagements

  • Professor Rogelio Laso Torts
  • Legal Career Strategies
  • 2011
  • Illinois Victim's Assistance Academy
  • Hate Crime
  • 2002

Attorney endorsements

Received (9)
Given (1)
Endorse Jon
DUI and DWI Attorney | Jan 19
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Jon Erickson is one of the finest DUI defense lawyers in Chicago. He practiced in front of me for over five years when I was a judge, and for many years before that as a fellow defense lawyer. He was always a well-prepared, zealous advocate. He has handled several high-profile cases, including a murder case where the defendant ran over a cabdriver with his own cab. Those accused of crimes, including but not limited to DUI, would be well advised to retain Jon."
DUI and DWI Attorney | Jan 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I have known Jon Forrest Erickson for more than four years. Jon studies the issues his clients face in court, prepares an aggressive defense, and produces successful results for his clients. I highly recommend Jon to anyone needing assistance with a DUI. Bradley D. Birge', Esq."
Civil rights Attorney | Jun 09
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Attorney Erickson is a legend in the civil rights community. Due to his knowledge and legal savvy he has helped hundreds of people. You cannot go wrong with Attorney Erickson fighting for you."
Criminal defense Attorney | Sep 07
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I highly endorse Mr. Erickson. Truly exceptional and caring attorney who produces great results in representing clients! I want all people with legal problems to contact him first."
Criminal defense Attorney | May 21
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse Jon. He is a highly skilled attorney that is well respected in the legal community."
DUI and DWI Attorney | Oct 03
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. This is a experienced and knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer.I have had the pleasure of knowing John Erickson since law school. We were classmates. He was a stellar law student. When other people were struggling to understand legal concepts he was shining. He especially grasped difficult subjects like Criminal Law and Procedure. More importantly, he was a wiz at Evidence. When other students wanted to understand these concepts they would ask Jon for help. He was a student's student. After law school Jon went on and received over 22 years of real TRIAL experience. He has handled sophisticated criminal trials with great success including murder trials. This is the equivalent of a doctor performing brain surgery. He now has become the lawyer to whom other lawyers come with questions. He has become a lawyer's lawyer. I am proud of the lawyer he has become, the person that he has always been, and to think that I am his friend. He is an advocate for his clients. He is their voice when no one will listen and no one hears them."
DUI and DWI Attorney | Jan 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I would trust Jon to do my own case."
DUI and DWI Attorney | Jan 19
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Jon is both talented and compassionate. He and his work are highly valued in the Chicagoland legal community."
View more endorsements