Special Operations Chief Edward “Eddie” Gallagher is a decorated Navy SEAL, but he is now being accused of committing war crimes. (Courtesy Sean Gallagher)
The decorated Navy SEAL leader alleged to have killed an injured ISIS prisoner of war in Iraq will remain in confinement as he awaits trial — which is now scheduled to start in February, his lawyer tells Fox News.
Edward Gallagher, who is also accused of intentionally firing sniper rounds at innocent civilians, is currently being held at a Navy brig in California.
“The military judge denied our motion to release Special Operations Chief Edward “Eddie” Gallagher from pretrial confinement where he has been since September 11, 2018 – Patriots Day,” his lawyer, Phil Stackhouse, told Fox News in a statement.
“The court recognized Eddie’s record of excellent service as evidenced by the testimony of several senior, current and former SEAL Team members. The court also acknowledged Eddie’s strong support network of family, friends and well-wishers,” Stackhouse added. “However, it was not enough when the complaining witnesses refused to be questioned by the defense and the Government refused to bring them to court.”
Stackhouse says Gallagher’s trial will start Feb. 19. Gallagher has pleaded not guilty to the charges, which include premeditated murder.
His brother, Sean, told Fox News last week that the 39-year-old “has a wife and three children that he loves deeply and that miss him sorely.”
Throughout his 19 years of service, Gallagher earned the Bronze Star with V for Valor twice, a Meritorious Unit commendation, and a trio of Navy and Marine Corps Achievement medals, among other recognitions and decorations.
He fought in Iraq and Afghanistan several times, but it was during Gallagher’s last combat deployment, in 2017, that prosecutors say he lost his way and “decided to act like the monster the terrorists accuse us of being.”