A journalist-turned-litigator, Chelsea Jones Crawford joined Brown, Goldstein & Levy in September 2015 and has extensive experience representing individuals and entities in complex civil matters, including federal civil rights litigation, serious personal injury and wrongful death, and commercial disputes.

At Brown, Goldstein & Levy, Chelsea has obtained some of the largest settlements in the State of Maryland. In 2021, she obtained a $6.5 million settlement on behalf of the family of Eric Sopp, an unarmed man in distress who was shot and killed by a Baltimore County police officer. In 2020, she helped obtain a nearly $8 million settlement for two men who were wrongfully convicted and imprisoned, and in 2018, she was part of a team that obtained a $9 million settlement on behalf of an innocent man who spent 21 years wrongfully incarcerated.

A former journalist covering daily news, Chelsea brings a passion for storytelling to every case. Chelsea has practiced before administrative agencies, courts across Maryland and in the District of Columbia, and in federal courts nationwide.

Prior to joining Brown Goldstein & Levy, Chelsea clerked for the Honorable Andre M. Davis on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and for the Honorable Stephanie A. Gallagher on the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland.

During law school, Chelsea served as the Executive Articles Editor of the University of Maryland Law Journal of Race, Religion, Gender and Class, Vice-President of the Black Law Students Association, and member of the law school’s National Moot Court Team. Chelsea received the 2013 Elizabeth Maxwell Carroll Chesnut Prize, known as the “Dean’s Award,” for her scholarship, personal drive, and excellence in writing and was awarded Order of the Barristers.

Before law school, Chelsea spent several years working in broadcast news. She began her career at KYW-TV in Philadelphia, where she worked the news desk. She later joined National Public Radio’s flagship afternoon program, All Things Considered, as an Assistant Editor.

Chelsea is active in several bar associations and organizations in Maryland, including the Alliance of Black Women Attorneys of Maryland and the Monumental City Bar Association. She is also a member of the Baltimore City Trial Court Judicial Nominating Commission and served on Attorney General Anthony Brown’s Transition Team.

Chelsea has been recognized multiple times by Lawdragon for her work, including on the “500 Leading Litigators in America” list for 2024, the “500 X – The Next Generation” list for 2023, and the “500 Leading Plaintiff Employment and Civil Rights Lawyers” list for 2022 and 2023. Best Lawyers lists her as “One to Watch” in the Civil Rights Law, Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense (General Practice), Labor and Employment Law (Employee), Litigation (Labor and Employment), and Personal Injury Litigation (Plaintiffs) categories. She has also been selected a Maryland Super Lawyers Rising Star since 2018.

Representative Cases

  • Estate of Malcolm Bryant v. Baltimore Police Department – Obtained an $8 million settlement for the family of a man who was wrongfully convicted and imprisoned for nearly 18 years for a murder he did not commit as a result of misconduct by a detective and forensic analyst within the Baltimore Police Department. Mr. Bryant was exonerated in 2016 after a court-ordered DNA test proved his innocence (2022).

  • Obtained a $6.5 million settlement on behalf of the family of Eric Sopp, an unarmed man who was shot and killed by a Baltimore County police officer.

  • Umar Burley and Brent Matthews v. Baltimore Police DepartmentObtained nearly $8 million for two men who were wrongfully convicted and imprisoned after plainclothes Baltimore Police Department officers (some of whom were later members of the Gun Trace Task Force) planted drugs in their car (2020).

  • Part of a team that obtained a court order holding the District of Columbia responsible for providing services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to eligible DC residents who are incarcerated in federal facilities (2020).

  • James Owens v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore.  Obtained a $9 million settlement on behalf of a man who was wrongfully convicted and imprisoned for 21 years after Baltimore homicide detectives concealed exculpatory evidence (2018).

  • Won a jury verdict and settlement on behalf of a man who was assaulted and wrongfully arrested in response to asking a Baltimore police officer for his badge number (2016).

Awards

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rated by superlawyers, rising stars, Chelsea J. Crawford, superlawers.com
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Lawdragon 2022 500 Leading Plaintiff Employment & Civil Rights Lawyers
Best Lawyers Ones to Watch, Brown Goldstein & Levy LLP, 2022
  • Baltimore Banner Emerging Leaders, 2024
  • Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America, 2024
  • Lawdragon 500 Leading Litigators in America, 2024
  • Lawdragon 500 X – The Next Generation, 2023
  • The Best Lawyers in America: Ones to Watch for Civil Rights Law, Commercial Litigation, Criminal Defense – General Practice, Labor and Employment Law – Employee, Litigation – Labor and Employment, and Personal Injury Litigation – Plaintiffs, 2023 & 2024
  • Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Employment and Civil Rights Lawyers, 2022-2023
  • The Daily Records Leading Women award, 2022
  • The Best Lawyers in America: Ones to Watch for Civil Rights Law, Criminal Defense – General Practice, and Litigation – Labor and Employment, 2022
  • Maryland Super Lawyers Rising Stars, 2018-2024