Michael P. Thorman
In over 35 years of practicing law, Mr. Thorman has established himself as one of the top litigators in Alameda County and the San Francisco Bay Area. He had excellent training. He studied trial practice at Stanford Law School with hands-on training from Rose E. Bird, later to become Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court. He cut his teeth in the criminal law in his first job out of law school as an associate with the legendary Clinton W. White, a top trial lawyer who later became a superior court judge and a Justice of the California Court of Appeal.
He has represented clients in more than 75 jury trials in both state and federal court, ranging from capital murder to drunk driving to personal injury. His better known cases include representation of a real estate developer/sports agent in a capital murder charge known in the press as the cross-bow murder, and representation of one of the defendants in the trans gender murder case out of Newark, CA. With his partner, Mr. Jules Bonjour, he obtained a 1 million dollar verdict against the California Highway Patrol following an auto accident that seriously injured his blue-collar client. He has handled cases throughout Northern California as well as Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Washington, D.C.
He is motivated in his work by the variety of his practice, the intellectual challenge of a legal problem and the desire to help people out of difficult circumstances. His style of practice relies on extensive preparation through both legal research and analysis and spending enough time with the client and family to make sure he understands their case and their needs. He believes that combining integrity and civility with a detailed knowledge of the law and facts has helped him achieve superior results for his clients, whether before a judge, a jury or in settlement negotiation.
Mr. Thorman received his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College in 1970, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude. He got his law degree from Stanford University in 1974. He has been a bar-certified criminal law specialist since 1988. He is a member of the California Attorneys for Criminal Justice and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, a state-wide and nation-wide criminal defense organization, respectively. He is also a member of the Consumer Attorneys of California, a state-wide organization of plaintiff’s personal injury lawyers. Other affiliations include the National Lawyer’s Guild, the American Inns of Court, and the Alameda County Bar Association.
Mr. Thorman and his wife, Dena, have two children, two grandchildren, two dogs, and two birds, and live in Orinda, California. His other passions include bicycle riding. He boasts too often some say about completing all five passes of the Markleeville Death Ride in 2003, and hopes someday to have the fortitude to do it again.
Areas of Practice:
- Litigation & Appeals
- Bar-Certified Criminal Law Specialist, 1988
- California, 1974
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, 1974
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California
- U.S. Supreme Court, 1988
- Stanford Law School, Stanford, California, 1974
- Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, 1970
Honors: Magna Cum Laude
Honors: Phi Beta Kappa
Professional Associations and Memberships:
- California Attorneys for Criminal Justice
- National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
- Consumer Attorneys of California
- Donald P. McCullum Youth Court
Board of Directors, Emeritus
- National Lawyer’s Guild
- American Inns of Court, Emeritus
- Alameda County Bar Association