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Deborah Ellis

Criminal Defense, Federal, Minnesota, Wisconsin Courts

Certified Criminal Law Specialist*

Deborah Ellis has been doing criminal defense work for 29 years. She received her early training from nationally recognized criminal defense lawyer Douglas W. Thomson upon graduation from law school. She established her own solo practice in 1993 and became recognized by her peers as one of the top criminal defense lawyers in Minnesota.
Ms. Ellis practices in Minnesota and Wisconsin state and federal courts.

Ms. Ellis is one of a dozen lawyers who serves members of the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Associates representing law enforcement officers who face critical incidents and criminal investigations.

Areas of Practice

  • Criminal Jury Trial -State and Federal
    • Murder
    • Criminal Sexual Conduct
    • Drug Offenses
    • Weapons Charges
    • White Collar Crimes
    • Fraud
    • Property Crimes
    • Child Endangerment
    • Traffic Offenses
  • Appellate and Post-Conviction Proceedings

  • Forfeiture
    • Homes and Real Property
    • Vehicles
    • Cash

Bar Admissions

  • Minnesota, 1983
  • Wisconsin, 1992
  • United States Supreme Court, 1993
  • Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • U.S. District Court, Districts of Minnesota and Wisconsin


  • Trial Lawyers College, Dubois, Wyoming, 2005
  • National Criminal Defense College, Macon, Georgia, 1986
  • William Mitchell College of Law, St Paul, Minnesota, 1983
  • Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minnesota, 1973

Honors and Awards

  • Top 40 Criminal Lawyer Listing - Minnesota, 2008, 2009
  • SuperLawyer, Minnesota Law & Politics Magazine, 1999 - Present
  • Top 40 Criminal Defense Lawyers, Minnesota Law & Politics Magazine
  • Distinguished Service Award, Minnesota Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2004

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Trial Lawyers College, 2006 - present
    Staff Member
  • Minnesota Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
    Past President and Past Member of the Board of Directors
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
    Lifetime Member
  • Minnesota Women Lawyers

*As certified by the Minnesota Bar Association

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