Former Casper Jail Worker Admits Sexually Assaulting Child Inmate
A former supervisor at the Regional Juvenile Detention Center in Casper admitted Tuesday morning that he sexually assaulted a female inmate during his employment.
John R. Gallagher pleaded guilty to one count of third-degree sexual assault, which is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
Assistant District Attorney Dan Itzen told District Judge Thomas Sullins that in exchange for the plea, prosecutors agreed to dismiss a second criminal charge.
Other than that, Itzen said, Gallagher's guilty plea is what's known as a 'cold plea,' meaning that all sentencing options are on the table and Gallagher could potentially receive the maximum prison sentence.
Charging documents say that an investigator with the Natrona County Sheriff's Office first looked into the case in late November after a girl who was then incarcerated at the Regional Juvenile Detention Center alleged that Gallagher had made inappropriate advances toward her and grabbed her breast.
Sometime during the first half of November, the victim said, Gallagher approached her while she was inside her cell. He asked her to expose her breasts for him to see, and she complied.
Gallagher allegedly pulled her closer to the opening of the cell door and fondled one of her breasts, just outside the view of the security cameras.
On Nov. 24, while the victim sat in a waiting room at the facility's nursing station, Gallagher allegedly unzipped his pants. Per the affidavit, the victim said that "nothing happened" and Gallagher did not expose himself to anyone at that time.
A second inmate later told the investigator that Gallagher had also acted inappropriately toward her.
After initially denying the claims of the first victim, Gallagher allegedly told the investigator that he did touch her breast.
Cory Miller, the facility's program director, told K2 Radio News in May that Gallagher was no longer employed by Cornerstone Programs, which runs the juvenile detention center.
Gallagher remained free on bond at the time of Tuesday's court hearing. Defense attorney Don Fuller asked Judge Sullins to clarify the bond conditions pertaining to travel, as Gallagher has received a job offer somewhere in Wyoming.