Brent is a creative and innovative litigator with first-chair trial and appellate experience. Brent’s clients benefit from his experience as a permanent law clerk to a federal judge and his extensive work on class action and mass tort cases, as well his involvement in nearly 30 jury trials. Brent has been significantly involved in cases involving a broad range of products and industries, including healthcare, consumer products, firearms, railroads, and tobacco. Brent stays current on federal court practice and class actions by serving as the Chair of the Western District of Missouri’s Federal Practice Committee, and he is a member of the Jury Instruction Committee of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. Brent also is a principal author of the Missouri and Kansas Class Action Law blog.

Recent Representative Matters

Trial Experience:

Brent has first-chaired jury trials in state and federal court, including:

Williams v. Jackson County, Missouri, No. 13-866 (W.D. Mo. 2017): Brent first-chaired a three-day civil jury trial representing an inmate who challenged the mail policy at the Jackson County Detention Center on First Amendment grounds.

Dinkins v. Correctional Medical Services, No. 09-4111 (W.D. Mo. 2016) Brent first-chaired a week-long civil jury trial representing a wheelchair-bound inmate claiming violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and the Eighth Amendment. It is believed to be the only civil trial involving monetary damages against a State for violations of the ADA or Rehabilitation Act.

Briggs v. Remington, No. 15CYCV01071 (Mo. Cir. Ct. Clay Cty. 2015) Brent served as first-chair trial counsel during a day-long bench trial involving claims of breach of contract and unfair business practices. The trial court ruled in our client’s favor.

Foster v. Wright et al., No. 12-4324 (W.D. Mo. 2014) Brent first-chaired a three day jury trial representing an inmate who alleged violations of his Fourth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendment rights. 

Recently, he has served as the primary legal issues attorney at the following trials:

Abdiana v. Quixotic Fusion, No. 1416CV03181 (Mo. Cir. Ct. Jackson Cty. 2016) Brent served as the primary legal issues attorney in a civil jury trial in which Shook represented a performing arts company on a claim against their landlord for constructive eviction after raw sewage repeatedly interfered with Quixotic’s use of the space and damaged its property. After a three-day trial, the jury found in favor of Quixotic and awarded damages.

Coleman v. Crawford, No. 13-4205 (W.D. Mo. 2016) Brent served as the primary legal issues attorney in a civil jury trial representing an inmate who claimed his Eighth Amendment rights were violated when guards failed to protect him during a savage attack.

Appellate Experience:

Jackson v. Riebold, 815 F.3d 114 (8th Cir. 2016) Brent briefed and argued a case involving allegations of constitutional violations against various defendants before the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.


Changes to Rule 23 and the Future of Class Actions and MDLs, Current Issues in MDLs and Class Actions, Federal Bar Association, Kansas City, Missouri, March 30, 2019.

International Association of Defense Counsel: Handling the Consumer Fraud Class Action, CLE Webinar (May 24, 2017).

Early Kill Shots in Class Actions: Motions to Strike Class Allegations, Shook, Hardy & Bacon’s Class Action and Complex Litigation Annual Spring Summit (June 2014).

The Missouri Bar Next Step Series: Federal Practice, CLE Webinar (2011, 2012 and 2013).

Media Coverage

Rising Star: Shook Hardy's Brent Dwerlkotte, Law360, June 7, 2022.