Nicholas Dwight Thornton

Nicholas Dwight Thornton loves practicing law in and out of the courtroom. He has extensive experience in representing people in all stages of criminal proceedings, from the first appearance or arraignment through trial, appeal, and post-conviction proceedings. While his primary practice area is criminal law, Nick also practices in family law, personal injury, and general litigation. Nick is licensed to practice in all federal and state courts in North Dakota and Minnesota.

Before joining Fremstad Law Firm, Nick represented almost two-thousand individual clients at the Fargo Public Defender Office in all types of criminal cases from driving under the influence and driving under suspension to murder and gross sexual imposition. Before that, he clerked for Justice Carol Ronning Kapsner at the North Dakota Supreme Court.

Nick received his undergraduate degree in criminal justice from Minnesota State University Moorhead. He received his law degree from the University of North Dakota School of Law where he was elected to the Order of the Coif. Nick has a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Mary and is pursuing a Ph.D. in criminal justice from the University of North Dakota.

Nick has authored two articles published by the North Dakota Law Review, presented on a number of criminal defense-related topics at continuing legal education seminars, and has taught law-related classes at the University of Mary. Nick is a past-president and charter member of the North Dakota Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Nick also serves as a volunteer assistant wrestling coach at a local youth wrestling club.

Nick is originally from Jamestown, North Dakota. He and his wife have two very active sons. During their spare time, Nick and his family enjoy traveling, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.

Payment types: Cash, Check, Credit card

Contact info
Nicholas Dwight Thornton3
Fremstad Law FirmP.O. Box 3143
3003 32nd Ave S, Ste 240
Fargo, ND, 58108-3143


Office (701) 353-2849
Fax (701) 478-7621







State Status Acquired Updated
MN Authorized to practice 2007 07/15/2016
ND Authorized to practice law 2006 07/24/2016

Award name Grantor Date granted
Rising Stars SuperLawyers 2015
Rising Star SuperLawyers 2014
Order of the Coif Order of the Coif 2006

Work experience
Title Company name Duration
Attorney Fremstad Law Firm 2014 – Present
Facilitator – Adjunct Faculty University of Mary 2010 – 2014
Public Defender North Dakota Commission for Legal Defense of Indigents 2008 – 2014
Adjunct Professor – Criminal Law Minnesota State University Moorhead 2008 – 2008
Associate Serkland Law Firm 2007 – 2008
Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Carol Ronning Kapsner North Dakota Supreme Court 2006 – 2007

School name Major Degree Graduated
University of Mary Management Master of Business Administration 2008
University of North Dakota School of Law Law Juris Doctor, with Distinction 2006
Minnesota State University, Moorhead Criminal Justice Bachelor of Arts, Cum Laude 2003

Speaking engagements
Conference name Title Date
The Current The Demand for DNA in Court Cases 2015
Cass County Bar Association – February 2015 Meeting Evaluating Attitudes Toward Sex Offenders 2015
Strategies in Defending DWI and DUI Cases in North Dakota Defending DWI/DUI Cases 2014
Minnesota State University Moorhead Criminal Law Association Drug Cases: Recent Trends 2011
Immigration Consequences CLE Padilla and Beyond: How Padilla v. Kentucky Changed the Game in North Dakota 2011
2011 Indigent Defense Seminar Selected Ethical Considerations for State Criminal Defense Practitioners 2011
Minnesota State University Moorhead Speaker Series Driving While Under the Influence: A Primer to DUI/DWI Law, Procedure, and Consequences 2009
Cocaine Sentencing: Resolving Disparities Disparities in crack sentencing after Gall and Kimbrough 2008

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