Navy SEAL faces war crime charges after allegedly 'slicing ISIS militant's throat with hunting knife' and posing for photos with the body
Edward Gallagher faces a glut of violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice for his actions while deployed in Mosul, Iraq, in 2017
Special Operations Chief Edward 'Eddie' Gallagher, 39, a Navy SEAL, is facing a prison term for allegedly stabbing an injured ISIS militant to death while deployed in Iraq. He is currently facing multiple charges including premeditated murder and attempted murder for allegedly slicing the combatant's throat with a hunting knife, Daily Mail reports.
Prosecutors also claim that in May 2017, the 39-year-old posed next to the terrorist's body for photos while deployed in Mosul. According to them, he is also accused of performing a re-enlistment ceremony beside the corpse and in front of the star spangled banner.
After the "ceremony", Gallagher allegedly texted a photo of the body to a fellow soldier, writing: "I got him with my hunting knife." Then, he allegedly fired at an unarmed man and woman a couple of months later.
The special operations chief has denied all the allegations but could face life in prison if convicted. Andrea, his wife and the mother of his children, said in an interview: "This is not who Eddie is. He is a lifesaver. He is that guy who runs into the burning building when other people are running out."
Having served overseas as a sniper and a medic in different deployments for 19 years, Gallagher was named the top platoon leader in SEAL Team 7 after his latest tour. He was subsequently nominated for the Silver Star — the military's third-highest honor, the New York Times reports.
The allegations, however, come from the last tour itself. According to CNN, Gallagher is said to have "with premeditation, murdered a wounded male person" under his care by "stabbing him in the neck and body with a knife" back in May 2017, Mosul.
The public affairs officer with the Naval Special Warfare Command, Tamara Lawrence, said the allegations are being taken very seriously.
"We train and operate in dynamic, complex and ambiguous environments and our operators are empowered and trusted to independently make difficult decisions during missions," she said. "They have consistently proven that their empowerment and trust is warranted. Allegations that indicate otherwise are, and will continue to be, investigated by the appropriate military and law enforcement authorities."