SAN DIEGO — On Friday, the defense in the murder trial of Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher rested its case.
Gallagher’s defense on Friday also requested that two Navy SEAL leaders to be granted immunity to testify, but the judge only granted one witness immunity – a lieutenant commander who has known Gallagher for years.
“Over the past two weeks you got to see it all. Everything in this trial went as well or better than we could possibly have expected. Now that all the evidence is in, we are going to take the weekend to prepare for closings,” said Tim Parlatore, Gallagher attorney.
The judge in the case denied immunity for Lt. Jake Portier but did grant immunity for Lt. Commander Robert Breisch to testify for the defense.
Breisch said he knows Gallagher well and the two deployed together in 2017. According to him, no one in the platoon ever came to him about Gallagher stabbing a detainee or shooting an old man and a young girl.
Breisch claims all the “grumblings” he heard about Gallagher were petty like stealing sunglasses and monster energy drinks.
During the trial, the prosecution asked Breisch why he did not open an investigation after seven months of complaints about Gallagher. Breisch was also asked why he did not report having evidence of a re-enlistment photo taken with a dead detainee.
Breisch told the court he did not think he had to.
“We planned for all of this. The prosecution did not. We investigated this case. The prosecution and NCIS did not,” said Parlatore.
On Friday, Chief Gallagher, his brother and wife Andrea left the courtroom pleased.
“No matter how much preparation the government put into this case, the one thing that they cannot get over is the fact that Eddie Gallagher is not guilty,” said Parlatore.
Attorneys for Gallagher and the prosecution return to Naval Base San Diego on Saturday for a closed session. On Monday, closing arguments will begin.