Molly Brizgys



Molly Brizgys has represented hundreds of clients at all stages of the state and federal criminal justice systems, from trial to appeal to post-conviction to parole. Her clients have included everyone from sophisticated executives to death row inmates to juveniles sentenced to life without parole and her cases have ranged from  financial crimes to firearms offenses, and from wire fraud to murder. She has significant experience with a wide variety of criminal cases, including violent crimes, sex crimes, identity theft, wire fraud, tax fraud, and money laundering with losses in the million of dollars. Molly has argued several times in front of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on issues of double jeopardy, the Sixth Amendment right to counsel, juvenile life without parole, and challenges to highly restrictive supervised release conditions. She has also litigated issues relating to unconstitutional detention, selective prosecution, arbitrary enforcement, federal jurisdiction, and various constitutional challenges related to searches and interrogations.

Molly is particularly skilled at guiding her clients through what are often daunting and frightening encounters with the criminal justice system. She takes particular care to learn about her clients in order to tell their story at critical moments in the case, such as when the client is seeking release from jail before trial and at sentencing.  Following a conviction, she also works hard to help her clients get their lives back together, for instance by representing them in their application for early termination of probation, by representing them in front of the Arizona Board of Executive Clemency and by helping them to apply for the restoration of their civil rights.

As a former senior staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona, Molly represented clients on constitutional issues related to racial profiling, sexual harassment, prison conditions, access to health care, discrimination, unlawful detention, and free speech.

Prior to working at the Arizona ACLU, Molly was a Criminal Justice Act panelist.  She began her career in criminal defense as a staff attorney at the New Hampshire Public Defender. She has also worked extensively with the Arizona Justice Project.

  • Won dismissal of a federal firearms offense under an obscure provision of the tax code
  • Won a probation sentence for firearms straw purchaser
  • Was able to secure a deferred sentencing agreement for federal drug felony charge
  • Not guilty verdict for several domestic violence offenses
  • Not guilty verdict for misdemeanor criminal damage
  • Successfully suppressed methamphetamine due to a Fourth Amendment violation which resulted in dismissal of the felony drug charge
  • Successfully won release for a client incarcerated for 25 years on her first hearing before the Board
  • CALI award winner, Contracts
  • CALI award winner, Federal Courts
  • McAuliffe Honor Society (2001-2004)
  • Member of the Stanford Judicial Committee (1997) 
  • Federal Bar Association Member
  • Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice
  • Senior Staff Attorney, ACLU
  • Criminal Justice Act Attorney, District Court of Arizona
  • New Hampshire Public Defender
  • Board of Advisors ASU’s School of Social Transformation
  • Cooperating Attorney, Arizona Justice Project
  • Desert Botanical Garden Children/Family Garden Experience Working Group (2015-2016)
  • New Hampshire (2004)
  • Arizona (2010)
  • New Hampshire Supreme Court (2004)
  • Arizona Supreme Court (2012)
  • Arizona District Court (2010)
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (2015)
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