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Former Arizona corrections director gets 2 years probation over 2022 armed standoff

The former Arizona corrections director said in court on Friday that he gave his life to the criminal justice system as he was trying to convince a judge to not have him incarcerated.

Charles Ryan pleaded no contest to disorderly conduct with a gun, and had another charge dropped in a plea deal with prosecutors who recommended probation over prison time.

Ryan’s lawyer said at his sentencing hearing that the 2022 incident occurred while his client was in an alcohol-caused blackout.

Ryan told the judge he’s ashamed of his own behavior and has been to hundreds of Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.

“I’m remorseful and apologetic. I’ve devoted my life to the criminal justice system,” Ryan said.

Ryan was initially accused by Tempe police of pointing a gun at officers during an armed standoff at Ryan’s home.

At Friday’s sentencing hearing, Ryan’s lawyer asked that the crime go undesignated while Ryan works to prove it should be labeled a misdemeanor.

Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Geoffrey Fish said no.

“This court sees daily crimes involving guns with all sorts of outcomes. And the court just feels there are certain crimes in which a designation is appropriate,” Fish said.

Fish put Ryan on two years of supervised probation during which Ryan cannot vote or own a gun.

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Matthew Casey has won Edward R. Murrow awards for hard news and sports reporting since he joined KJZZ as a senior field correspondent in 2015.