John Paul (JP) Visaya

Staff Attorney

JP Visaya is a staff attorney at the ACLU of Northern California. He works on a variety of issues including economic, racial, and criminal justice.

JP is part of the litigation team for Phillips v. State of California, a challenge to the systemic denial of Fresno County indigent defendants’ right to counsel. His work focuses on identifying how structural deficiencies in Fresno County’s indigent defense system manifest in individual cases.

Prior to joining the ACLU of Northern California, JP was a San Francisco County deputy public defender from 2012 to 2017. He tried 26 jury trials before joining the Specialty Courts Unit, where he represented clients in Drug Court, Community Justice Court, and as an attorney in the office’s Clean Slate Program. In Drug Court and Community Justice Court, JP advocated for substance abuse treatment and social services for his clients as an alternative to traditional sentencing options. And as a Clean Slate attorney, he helped his clients expunge their criminal records.

JP graduated magna cum laude and received his B.A. in Sociology from California State University Sacramento. He earned his J.D. from Golden Gate University School of Law, where he participated in the Honors Lawyering Program.