Charged with War Crimes and Stuck in the Brig, a Navy SEAL Vows to Fight On by Carl Prine – Navy Times
Special Operations Chief Edward "Eddie" Gallagher, a highly decorated Navy SEAL, is fighting murder charges tied to the death of an Islamic State operative in Iraq. He says he's innocent and will battle authorities to clear his name.
Charged earlier this month with multiple war crimes in connection with the 2017 stabbing death of a detainee in Iraq, Special Operations Chief Edward “Eddie” Gallagher vows to fight for his freedom.
The 19-year Navy veteran has hired two high-powered criminal defense attorneys who specialize in military law — Colby Vokey of Dallas and Phillip Stackhouse of San Diego — and he’s exploring a civil rights lawsuit against Naval Criminal Investigative Service agents for alleged misconduct linked to his Sept. 11 arrest and detention in San Diego’s Naval Consolidated Brig Miramar.
An Article 32 hearing with a special military judge sent from Florida will begin to sift through the evidence against Gallagher on Nov. 14 in San Diego, according to Stackhouse.
The judge will then recommend which charges should be forwarded or withdrawn by an admiral who could convene a general court-martial. Gallagher has been accused of murder, aggravated assault, obstruction of justice and professional misconduct.
“While the burden is very, very low to send the charges to court, Chief Gallagher will, like he has on every combat deployment, fight. Fight to clear his name, fight for justice, and fight to expose the lies that are being made against him,” said Stackhouse in a written statement emailed to Navy Times.
Multiple criminal defense attorneys, senior military commanders in the Navy and several special warfare units told Navy Times that the ongoing war crimes probe isn’t focused solely on Gallagher but includes more than a dozen SEALs who also deployed between 2017 and early 2018 near what then was Islamic State-held Mosul, Iraq…