“I know what motivates DA’s, what drives their decisions. I know what it takes for them to prove a case.” Ryan brings the advantage of having spent sixteen years on the other side, prosecuting cases for the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office. Ryan conducted 46 jury trials. As an Assistant Chief Deputy District Attorney, Ryan supervised Yolo’s felony trial teams, Case Charging Unit, and Major Crimes Unit before deciding to move into criminal defense. His insight into prosecution strategies is invaluable to his clients.
According to founding partner, David Cohen, “Ryan had a reputation in Yolo as a compassionate but tough-as-nails DA who gave his all to every case, working hard, using bold tactics, and checking every detail. He was a fierce and respected prosecutor.” Ryan came to the Cohen Defense Group because he wants to help people. As Ryan says, “When you’re a prosecutor, you’re representing the interests of the community at large – the People of the State of California. When you’re defending, you’re representing that person sitting right next to you in court, and only that person. I want to advocate for that person who is in trouble and help them move past it.”
Ryan is a third-generation attorney who sees law as a profession of service to the community and acts to better the justice system wherever he can. Ryan cares deeply about mental health issues, which stems in part from raising two severely disabled children, for whom he is a constant advocate. He contributed to the definitive guide for the State’s new Mental Health Diversion program. As a prosecutor, Ryan created a policy diverting those caught with drugs into treatment instead of prosecution. To make the criminal justice system more transparent and unbiased, Ryan authored Penal Code section 13370, the Justice Data Accountability and Transparency Act (JDATA), and Penal Code Section 741, requiring prosecuting agencies to use race-blind charging in criminal cases.