Dennis M. Gonzales received his Juris Doctorate from Southwestern Law School in 1974, and has been a successful trial lawyer for over 40 years.
In 1974, Mr. Gonzales began his career with the Los Angeles County Counsel’s Office in the Children’s Services Division, protecting the rights of juveniles. In 1976, he began working in the General Litigation Division and then went on to the Law Enforcement Services Division where he began litigating cases involving dangerous conditions and federal civil rights. From 1980 through 2008, Mr. Gonzales specialized in defending wrongful death and excessive force cases on behalf of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (“LASD”) in both federal and state courts.
After his 100th trial victory, Mr. Gonzales received awards from the Los Angeles County Bar Association, the Professional Peace Officers Association, and the Sheriff’s Relief Association. In addition, he was awarded commendations by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for his 100th Trial Victory and for 34 years of outstanding service. Mr. Gonzales has represented law enforcement agencies for over 40 years in both public and private practice. He has tried and won over 120 cases in federal and state courts. The majority of these jury trials involved civil rights, police misconduct, employment, and personal injury.
Mr. Gonzales joined LBAC after retiring from the County of Los Angeles in 2009. He continues to litigate police misconduct cases in both federal and state courts, again being successful in a vast majority of the cases he has tried. In addition to representing the County of Los Angeles during his time with County Counsel, Mr. Gonzales has successfully litigated cases for Orange County and a number of local city agencies, including the City of Santa Maria on California’s Central Coast.
Mr. Gonzales has conducted numerous seminars in trial tactics and strategy, specializing in high-liability police litigation, and focusing on claims brought under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 (federal civil rights), state civil rights, wrongful death, police misconduct, and law enforcement employment.
Bar Admissions and Memberships
California State Bar, 1974
United States Supreme Court
United States District Courts of California
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit