Jonathan M. Brayman is a Partner with Breen & Pugh. His practice focuses on state and federal criminal defense, Section 1983 civil rights actions, class actions, and asset forfeiture defense.
Brayman has distinguished himself as both a trial and appellate lawyer. In his first year of practice, he helped obtain outright acquittals in his first jury trial (February 2011) and in his first murder trial (November 2011). Brayman has helped to create favorable precedent recognizing greater protections for citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures, and winning outright reversals and new trials for numerous clients leading to their release from prison.
Brayman served as one of the lead attorneys who represented a Chicago man exonerated after serving 20 years of false imprisonment in a Section 1983 wrongful conviction case against the City of Chicago and two former Area 3 CPD Detectives, resulting in a multi-million dollar settlement in June 2018.
Before joining Breen & Pugh, Brayman worked with the Law Offices of Thomas Peters, where he litigated Section 1983 civil rights cases. He served as class counsel to tens of thousands of class members in numerous civil rights class actions successfully challenging the unconstitutional policies and practices of the City of Chicago and winning settlements that included wide-ranging injunctive and monetary relief.
Brayman graduated from the University of Iowa College of Law in 2010 with the Willard L. Boyd Public Service Award (Highest Honors). He was named the 2009-2010 Ramza-Fester “Rainbow Rights” Scholar; an award given to a student with exemplary service in helping to advance the rights of individuals in the LGBT community through community outreach, legal advocacy, and scholarship.
Prior to graduating from law school, Brayman’s experience included helping to win a new trial for a man sentenced to death by a federal jury in Louisiana. Brayman also worked for federal district court judges in Chicago and in New Orleans (2009), as well as a research assistant to Professor Angela Onwuachi-Willig, a prominent critical race theorist and employment law scholar (2008-10). During law school, Brayman also clerked in the Chicago office of the Federal Defender Program and served as a student writer and contributing member to the Journal of Gender, Race & Justice.
In addition to his work with the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Brayman currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, as well as on the Justice Council for Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law’s Center on Wrongful Convictions and on the Illinois Supreme Court’s Commission on Access to Justice’s Forms Committee for Civil Asset Forfeiture. He has been named a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers and was profiled byLeading Lawyers in their inaugural publication of Emerging Lawyers. Brayman is a proud member of the Chicago Inn of Court.
Cross-Examination Trial Pack
NACDL’s new Cross-Examination Trial Pack includes three of our best-selling Cross-Examination resources: “Damage Control: Situational Cross-Examination Techniques Trial Guide”, "Ultimate Cross 2.0: Audio Recordings & Written Materials" and "Sample Cross-Examination Questions."
This masterful collection of cross-examination resources provide countless tips, techniques and strategies for a variety of criminal case-specific scenarios. Learn to cross-examine a variety of trial witnesses!
Death Investigation: Forensic Pathology in the Courtroom and Cause & Manner of Death (2022)
This unique program provides criminal defense lawyers with an accurate and clear overview of forensic pathology and the countless factors to consider in a death investigation and will methodically explain what happens during an autopsy to determine cause and manner of death.
You'll uncover the different types of medicolegal death investigations, what to request from your MDI expert, quality benchmarks for accreditation and certification, guidelines and standards, common terminology and frequently asked questions.
The Psychology of Persuasion & Storytelling for Criminal Defense Lawyers
This Trial Resource Guide is a masterful collection of practical tips, techniques and strategies focused solely on using the arts and sciences of persuasion to improve your storytelling skills at trial.
You'll learn how to master the ability to communicate with juries, deliver powerful openings and closings, perform convincing cross-examinations, use effective courtroom choreography and non-verbal communication, identify and develop the optimal theme and theory for your case, and offer compelling arguments during mitigation and sentencing.
Zealous Advocacy in Sexual Assault & Child Victims Cases (2022)
Defending charges of sexual assault and child abuse can be daunting — but with the right tools, it doesn’t have to be.
Every year, NACDL identifies the hottest topics and most pressing issues when defending these cases, and brings-in nationally-renowned lawyers and experts to help you prepare for battle. This year’s 13th Annual Defending Sex Cases training program is our best yet; packed with topics and speakers you won’t want to miss!