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As Capitol Riot prosecution continues, some evidence sealed in Grafton County man’s case

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 4/13/2021 9:40:24 PM
Modified: 4/14/2021 7:22:17 AM

A federal judge has ordered attorneys to keep certain pieces of evidence confidential in the case against a Grafton County man and five other defendants who are facing charges in the riot at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

Under the protective order, issued Monday in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., by Judge Carl Nichols, attorneys are barred from sharing any discovery evidence that prosecutors deem “sensitive” or “highly sensitive” with anyone except fellow members of their legal team or the defendants.

“Sensitive materials” may include personal information on the defendants; video footage from inside the Capitol building; information on confidential informants; and repair estimates on the damage done to the Capitol building from the Architect of the Capitol.

Prosecutors have already shared some evidence from their investigation with the defense, including cellphone records, including videos and photos, police paperwork and notes, and arrest packets.

The filing is the latest development in the charges against Thomas R. Gallagher, a 61-year-old Bridgewater, N.H., resident who is one of over 300 people accused of breaking into the U.S. Capitol building as Congress was attempting to certify Joe Biden’s electoral college victory over Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election.

Gallagher pleaded not guilty on Jan. 22 to charges of entering and staying in a restricted building; engaging in disorderly conduct with intent to impede government business; engaging in disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds; and violent entry and disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds.

He was released with conditions including that he not travel to Washington, D.C., that he not possess firearms and that out-of-state and international travel be approved by authorities.

Gallagher could not be reached for comment, and messages left for his wife, Valerie Gallagher, were not returned.

However, a financial affidavit he filed in the case to have an attorney appointed to represent him shows Gallagher has been unemployed since March 2018 and that he made over $8,000 per month at his last job, which is not named in the document.

Along with the pay, he received benefits including a pension and Social Security, according to the filing.

Gallagher and his wife, who works part time making $800 a month, live in New Hampshire and care for their 20-year-old daughter, the document said.

Their home, four blocks from Newfound Lake, is worth about $300,000 and has a $145,000 mortgage, according to his financial affidavit.

On her Facebook profile, Valerie Gallagher says that she works for Newfound Regional High School and previously worked at Methuen Public Schools in Methuen, Mass.

Officials in Bridgewater have said they don’t know much about Gallagher, though Selectman Terence Murphy said he believes Gallagher has Massachusetts ties.

Gallagher’s attorney, Sebastian Norton, told the Washington Post that his client had taken a bus from Massachusetts with other protesters headed to Washington.

Gallagher’s case is being heard alongside five other defendants accused of the same crimes, because they were all arrested together in the Capitol Visitor Center, according to prosecutors

In an affidavit filed in federal court on Jan. 15, Capitol Police Officer Joseph Bruno wrote that he saw a crowd of people inside the building, some of whom were “making loud noises, and kicking chairs, throwing an unknown liquid substance at officers, and spraying an unknown substance at officers.”

Police said a small group of six people, including Gallagher, were standing near the front of the crowd near the House Atrium.

“The six individuals, like others in the larger crowd, willfully refused the order to leave,” the affidavit said.

Police took all six into custody, the affidavit said. Other suspected rioters were arrested and charged separately.

Gallagher and the other five co-defendants are expected to go in front of the judge again for a status conference on June 1.

Anna Merriman can be reached at amerriman@vnews.com or 603-727-3216.




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