Ryan J. Levitt

Ryan Levitt

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Ryan J. Levitt is an individual for whom criminal defense was always a calling. Whether it is defending the wrongfully accused, challenging government overreach, helping a client through one of if not the most difficult circumstances of their lives, or anything in between-he finds a passion and purpose in every case-and never needs to look far to find the desire to bring the full weight of his formidable talents, knowledge, and experience to bear on any adversary threatening his clients freedom and wellbeing.

Today Ryan is a partner at Cheronis, Parente & Levitt LLC. He is admitted to practice in a number of jurisdictions across the country, including the federal district courts for the Northern District of Illinois, Northern District of Indiana, federal circuit courts of appeals for the 7th and 8th Circuit, the Supreme Court of the United States, and all court systems within the state of Illinois. He works hand in hand with Mr. Cheronis on all firm matters.

Prior to becoming a licensed attorney on November 5, 2015, Ryan attended DePaul University both as an undergraduate student, where he attained his Bachelors of Science Degree in Economics, and as a law student, where he obtained his Juris Doctor Degree in May of 2015. Ryan earned a remarkable number of honors throughout his time at DePaul. While frequenting the Dean's List nearly every semester, he also received the highest class grade in evidence, advanced criminal procedure, and criminal drafting, and was recognized as an Honors Scholar with the school's Center for Public Interest Law. Ryan knew from an early stage that his interests lie with defending those facing the most serious penalties our legal system imposes, as he graduated with a Certificate in Criminal Law. He also received the Benjamin Hooks Distinguished Public Service Award for completing over 200 hours of community service before graduating.

At that time and after becoming an attorney, Ryan's formative years first brought him to the Cook County Public Defender's Office. There Ryan spent his days in the courtroom and evenings at the jail visiting his clients. He was able to gain a vast amount of experience in a short amount of time working on all manner of cases, including homicides, sexual assault, weapon and drug-related offenses, and other violent offenses across a number of felony courtrooms. He participated in all aspects of litigation, including bench and jury trials, suppression and other evidentiary hearings, bond hearings, and all manner of motion practice. Ryan was also an active member of DePaul University's civil rights legal clinic around the same time, and gained invaluable experience working on Jon Burge-related civil rights litigation and the only criminal case in which the state of Illinois has ever filed terrorism charges.

Upon graduation, Mr. Levitt worked for another boutique federal criminal defense practice under the guidance of two former Assistant United States' Attorneys. There he specialized in all manner of federal criminal practice, including defending against white collar and fraud offenses, terrorism and national security matters, violent crimes and drug offenses, government investigations, and appellate and post-conviction matters.

Mr. Levitt joined what was then the Law Office of Damon M. Cheronis as an associate in 2016. He and Damon have defended hundreds of individuals across the country in both the state and federal system, and at all stages-investigation, pretrial, trial, appeals, and post-conviction proceedings. Over the years his representative matters have expanded to include dozens upon dozens of cases involving allegations of fraud and other white collar offenses, public corruption, international drug trafficking organizations, international money laundering schemes, and even espionage-related charges and the trial defense in People of the State of New York v. Harvey Weinstein. Beyond presenting argument before the 7th Circuit and First District on numerous occasions, cross examining witnesses and serving as Damon's second chair across numerous state and federal trials, Ryan has demonstrated time and again his most valuable asset may well be his unrivaled ability to analyze a case, synthesize discovery, and construct a defense.

Practice Areas

  • Federal and State Criminal Law
  • Civil Rights Law
  • Appellate Law

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit