SAN DIEGO — A fundraising event for Navy SEAL Chief Edward Gallagher, who is accused of several war crimes including murder, drew a sold out crowd at Twisted Taps in University Heights Friday night.
“They f—ed with the wrong family and … we’re going to fight this. We’re going to fight this every step of the way,” Sean Gallagher, Edward’s little brother, said to the crowd, some with shirts reading “Free Eddie.”
Gallagher is currently awaiting trial in San Diego. He is accused of several war crimes, including shooting at civilians and stabbing a detained and wounded ISIS fighter to death, and of obstruction of justice. Gallagher has also been accused of posing for a photo and performing his re-enlistment ceremony next to a dead body.
Recently, it was revealed that Gallagher is at the center of another investigation, this time in the shooting death of a goat herder in Afghanistan in 2010.
He has denied all allegations.
Gallagher’s supporters said the mission of Friday night’s fundraiser was to raise money to help with his legal battle. Speakers also included Gallagher’s wife Andrea, and New York’s 9/11 police commissioner.
“They have a job to do. Let them do their damn job. Let them go and kill the enemy and leave them alone. Reward them for doing their job,” retired police commissioner Bernard Kerik said.
“The allegations have no evidence on most of these charges, or the evidence is exculpatory. It’s the exact opposite of what’s been put out in these narratives. So you’re building a case on cobbled up lies, fabrications and rumors,” Andrea Gallagher said.
The Gallagher family said he is grateful for his supporters.
“I think Eddie would just love to say that he fought for you for 20 years and he wouldn’t change a thing about it. He’s lived an honorable life as a Navy SEAL, as a service member, as a husband and a father. He has nothing to be ashamed of,” Andrea Gallagher said.
The Gallagher family has repeatedly criticized the Naval Criminal Investigative Service for their treatment of Gallagher. FOX 5 has reached out to the agency and officials said they do not comment during open investigations.
The family has also said Gallagher has been treated unlawfully when it comes to his confinement.
Public Affairs Officer Tamara Lawrence, with the Naval Special Warfare Command, sent the following in an email to FOX 5:
“The President directed that SOC Gallagher be moved into “less restrictive confinement” and the Navy has fully complied. The terms of his pretrial restriction are reasonable and appropriate. As has been the case throughout, he has full access to his legal team and medical care, and the ability to communicate with and receive visits from his family.
Chief Gallagher has a laptop computer from which he is able to work on his case with his defense team. He also has a cell phone with pre-programmed numbers from which he can call his family and legal team from his barracks room. He is able to have that phone with him all the time.
Chief Gallagher is charged with murder and obstruction of justice. As is the case with any Sailor accused of a crime, Chief Gallagher is entitled to the presumption of innocence and a fair trial. The Navy will continue to safeguard those rights and the integrity of the judicial process by fully complying with all governing rules and regulations.”