The Latest: Trump congratulates Navy SEAL on acquittal

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The Latest on a Navy SEAL acquitted of murder in the death of a wounded war prisoner in Iraq (all times local):

8:12 a.m.

President Donald Trump has tweeted congratulations to a Navy SEAL found not guilty of murder in the death of a wounded war prisoner in Iraq.

The president wrote Wednesday, “Congratulations to Navy Seal Eddie Gallagher, his wonderful wife Andrea, and his entire family. You have been through much together. Glad I could help!”

Last March, Trump intervened to move Gallagher from the brig to less restrictive confinement in a Navy hospital. Trump tweeted at the time it was to honor Gallagher’s past service to the country

In a Fox News interview earlier Wednesday, Gallagher thanked Trump for his support.

A military jury in San Diego acquitted Gallagher of all but one charge Tuesday, only finding him guilty of posing with the corpse of the dead militant. The jury is scheduled to deliberate Wednesday on his sentence.

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6:27 a.m.

The decorated Navy SEAL who was acquitted of murder in the killing of a wounded Islamic State captive in Iraq thanked Fox News, President Donald Trump and two congressmen for their support during his trial.

Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher also told Fox & Friends on Wednesday he feels “blessed to have the support that I had this whole time from the country and from the troops.”

Asked what his message might be to future Navy SEALS, Gallagher said “loyalty is a trait that seems to be lost.”

The same military jurors who acquitted Gallagher Tuesday will now deliberate his punishment for the single charge on which he was convicted: posing with the militant’s corpse.

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Melley contributed from Los Angeles.

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