Eric Nelson (born 1975) is a 48 year-old American attorney, author, and founding partner at Halberg Defense, best known as Derek Chauvin’s attorney. He represented the former police officer charged with the murder of George Floyd, the African American security guard.
Eric Nelson is one of the 12 attorneys that work with the Minnesota Police and Peace Officer’s Association to defend police officers involved in crimes. He caught media attention for being Derek Chauvin’s lawyer, mainly because of the outcry that followed Floyd’s death. The death of the African American, which brought about the term “I can’t breath,” caused quite a buzz around the globe. Here is everything to learn about the attorney.
Eric Nelson Was Born In Minnesota
According to credible sources, Eric Nelson was born in 1975 in Minnesota, the United States of America. However, his date and month of birth have been kept off the radar, making his birth sign unknown. Following his place of birth, he is considered an American citizen. The attorney’s ethnicity has remained unclear, though some sources claim that he belongs to the white race.
Although a highly profiled attorney, Eric has not disclosed much about his family background. To this end, the name of his parents and what they do for a living are unclear. There are also no details on if he is a lone child or has siblings, as he rarely speaks about them.
Eric is married to Susan Nelson and has three children with her. Though not much is known about his family, his work profile says he lives in South Minneapolis with his wife and three children.
He Earned a Juris Doctor From Hamline University School of Law
As much as Eric Nelson’s basic education was not revealed, the attorney attained a high level of education. He attended Roosevelt High School in Minneapolis and graduated in 1992. He then enrolled in a private Christian university affiliated with the American Baptist Churches USA in St. Davids, Pennsylvania. The school is better known as Eastern University.
Eric Nelson graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University in 1996. The attorney furthered to Hamline University School of Law in 1998 and graduated with a Juris Doctor in 2000.
Eric Nelson Is a Defense Attorney
Having gained a good level of education, Eric Nelson has a highly profiled career. He practices law in the U.S state courts of Minnesota and Wisconsin. The attorney also practices in the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota and the Eastern District of Wisconsin federal courts.
He co-founded the Halberg Criminal Defense Institute and was one of its founding attorneys in 2005. The attorney has defended clients charged with a series of crimes, including homicide, sexual assault, drug offenses, and many others, through jury trial, appeal, and negotiations. He has defended about 880 criminal charges for clients, with 60 percent of traffic-related crimes.
Eric Nelson is also one of the 12 attorneys that work with the Minnesota Police and Peace Officer’s Association to defend police officers that are involved in crimes. He serves as a judge for moot court and mock trial competitions. He was a board member of the Minnesota Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
Eric is a National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers member and the Douglas Amdahl Inn of Court. He is also a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice. Aside from Eric Nelson’s profession as an attorney, he is also an author. He serves as a contributing author to the Minnesota Driving While Intoxicated Deskbook. The attorney is also a speaker on criminal law and speaks to people all around Minnesota.
Accolades and Recognitions
Eric Nelson has earned some recognition for his contributions as an attorney. He was recognized as the Minnesota Super Lawyer Rising Star from 2005 to 2013. The attorney held the position of Minnesota Super Lawyer from 2014 to 2019.
He was once named in the Top 40 under 40 by the National Trial Lawyers. Eric was also ranked as a Top Ten Trial Attorney by the National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys.
He Replaced Thomas Kelly To Become Derek Chauvin’s Attorney
Derek Chauvin was a former Minneapolis police officer charged with the murder of George Floyd. On May 25, 2020, a convenience store called 911, reporting that George Floyd bought a cigarette with a counterfeit $20 bill. The police responded immediately, and during the arrest, Chauvin pinned Floyd to the ground under his knee for longer than necessary. This caused breathing issues for Floyd, which eventually led to his death.
Bystanders had allegedly pleaded with the officer to let George up, but he had ignored them. The deceased also pleaded with him, stating that he could not breathe. Even after George Floyd lost consciousness, the ex-police officer still would not let him up. George Floyd was confirmed dead an hour after he was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center in an ambulance.
After his death, Derek, alongside three other officers, was dismissed from the service. On May 29, 2020, Mike Freeman, a Hennepin County attorney, pressed unintentional second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter charges against Derek Chauvin.
Thomas “Tom” Kelly of Kelly and Jacobson was originally Derek’s lawyer after he was charged. After some time, Thomas backed out of the case, citing medical reasons. At this point, Eric Nelson took over the case and defended the former policeman till he was finally convicted on June 2021.
How Much is Eric Nelson’s Net Worth?
With his high work experience and many ventures, Eric Nelson is assumed to be worth quite a reasonable sum. As stated earlier, the attorney has not disclosed some details about him, and his net worth is not an exception. Though he has not revealed his net worth, an American criminal attorney earns between $80,475 to $107,821 or more.
Judging by the time Eric Nelson started practicing and the series of cases he has taken, he should have an impressive net worth. He also earns from his job as a speaker and contributing author, though the amount he makes from the endeavor is unknown.