We wish we didn't have to trust Leo Gallagher
, county attorney of Lewis & Clark County
.Unfortunately, we have no choice unless some brave soul manages to get a court order.
According to news reports, Mr. Gallagher
announced last week that insufficient evidence exists to file further charges in the tragic death of state Rep.
credit, Mr. Gallagher
kept quiet about all of that throughout the investigation.All sorts of reasons exist for keeping criminal investigations under wraps.But now the investigation is over, and we're having trouble understanding why such a tight muzzle remains on the case.
It's lucky, in a way, that Mr. Gallagher
is a Democrat.If he
were a Republican, withholding details of a case involving Republicans, his
stance would appear far more suspect.
We can understand the argument that it violates privacy to disseminate details that may be embarrassing but don't point to criminal charges.But it's difficult to see why he
couldn't release at least enough information to answer some of the questions that have roiled this case from the beginning. Mr. Gallagher
understanding of the law is that, absent a court order, details may be released only with the consent of the victim's family.We suspect he
is reading the law too narrowly; however, if he
is not, then the law needs to be broadened.Information about cases of such importance should not be left to private discretion.
As it stands, Mr. Gallagher's stance on a court order sounds like an invitation.Here's hoping that someone takes him up on it.
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