Judge finds SLO County developer incorrigible, bail again denied

July 6, 2024

John Belsher and Ryan Petetit, also known as Ryan Wright

By KAREN VELIE

For the fourth time, a federal judge denied San Luis Obispo County developer Ryan Wright’s request to get out of jail on bail.

Federal agents arrested 37-year-old Wright, formerly known as “Ryan Petetit,” on Oct. 30 on charges of conspiracy, falsification of records and obstruction of justice and then transported him to the Los Angeles Metropolitan Detention Center. Along with his former business partner John Belsher, Wright allegedly bribed former San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Adam Hill.

He has since been slapped with 18 additional charges related to a proposed development in Texas, including wire fraud, bank fraud and access device fraud.

In his previous attempts to get out of jail on bail, Wright’s public defender Gerald Salseda argued that a civil case accusing Wright and Belsher of bilking a couple who invested in their projects out of millions of dollars while living a life of luxury was an unproven allegation.

However, in May a SLO County judge determined Wright and Belsher acted with fraud and deceit in their dealings with Jeff and Debora Chase, before ordering the developers to pay the couple more than $3.6 million. The judge issued his final judgement on June 2.

At the start of his June bail hearing, Wright’s attorney Salseda reminded the judge that they were not supposed to include evidence not previously considered by the court, in an unsuccessful attempt to keep the Chase ruling from impacting Wright’s attempt to get out of jail.

Salseda than agreed with prosecutors that the $100,000 bond Wright offered appeared tainted, before saying he wanted to withdraw the proposal. Instead, Salseda argued Wright should have been released on bail “from day one” based on pretrial services recommending Wright’s release on $50,000 bail.

Judge Percy Anderson did not agree, noting Wright’s extensive foreign travel, failure to be candid about his assets and criminal history supported his pretrial incarceration.

On June 24, Salseda filed a notice of appeal regarding Anderson’s ruling.

Meanwhile, Belsher put his home in San Luis Obispo on the market. He has since moved to Michigan where he is now licensed to practice law.

 


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One has to ask how an officer of the court can foster a criminal and benefit as a business partner? What kind of court do we have in this county? Certainly, the Feds

will do their job. Right?


Incorrigible is used to describe a person who has persistently broken the law and has habits that are seemingly impossible to change. It implies a sense of hopelessness or futility in attempting to correct or reform the individual. Seems to fit well with a person awaiting trial and breaking the law while in custody.


As I’ve said in the past, as bad as Wright is Belsher is worse!!!

Still hoping that the Courts make the judgment for the Chase’s restitution so that Belsher doesn’t slime his way out of it!!!


Well, at least the Bel can practice law to repay the debt to the best friends he stole from. But poor Michigan!


Why even go after these two. Trumps been doing business this way for his whole life and is actually getting the support of over half the citizens. Let them go, let them go!


How can the state of Michigan issue a law license to someone who has a pending case in CA? Do they even check? Maybe Belsher was looking ahead, and got that license before the shit hit the fan! He can run…but he can’t hide!


I looked it up and license was obtained June 24th. Hopefully someone reports the judgement (which has been made final) to Michigan and California State bar.


Belsher should have been moved to a cell next to Wright.


Along with a few others of their ilk!