PSNI investigated domestic abuse allegations against Derry manager Rory Gallagher

Northern Ireland’s Public Prosecution Service decided not to prosecute; GAA manager’s ex-wife Nicola Gallagher alleged on social media she had suffered a litany of violent attacks

Allegations of domestic abuse made against Derry GAA manager Rory Gallagher were investigated by police in Northern Ireland and a decision was made not to prosecute.

Prosecutors decided there was “insufficient evidence to provide a reasonable prospect of conviction”, the North’s Public Prosecution Service (PPS) said.

Earlier Mr Gallagher issued a response to “very serious allegations” made against him by his ex-wife in a social media post.

In a statement on Thursday evening, a PPS spokesperson said it received two investigation files from the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) in January and June 2022.


“All the available evidence in these two files was considered in line with the PPS Code for Prosecutors.

“It was determined that there was insufficient evidence to provide a reasonable prospect of conviction for any offence in relation to any individual.

“Decisions not to prosecute any individual issued in January 2022 and September 2022.”

A PSNI spokeswoman subsequently confirmed police “investigated a number of reported incidents” and files were submitted to the PPS.

In a statement on Thursday, Mr Gallagher said “allegations against me have been investigated and dealt with by the relevant authorities”.

He was responding to a Facebook post by his former wife Nicola Gallagher, which alleged she had suffered a litany of domestic violence attacks by Mr Gallagher over more than two decades.

Ms Gallagher said she was speaking out because she wanted other young girls to know “that silence is not the answer”.

Referring to her allegations against Mr Gallagher, she said: “Blocking it out was easier than admitting what was happening”, adding “please anyone who’s been through this, speak out”.

One of the GAA’s most high-profile managers, Mr Gallagher steered Derry to an Ulster football title and the All-Ireland semi-final last year.

The team is due to take on Armagh in this year’s Ulster final in Clones on Sunday.

It is understood gardaí are aware of the social media post and engagement has taken place with an individual around it. In a statement An Garda Síochána said it does not comment on material posted online.

In a statement released by Logan and Corry Solicitors, Mr Gallagher said he had been “made aware of a social media post by my estranged wife Nicola Gallagher in which she has made a number of very serious allegations against me”.

He said their marriage had broken down over four years ago and “those closest to our family are well aware of the reasons for the breakdown of our marriage and the continued issues we have faced since that time”.

“Allegations against me have been investigated and dealt with by the relevant authorities.

“My focus over the past four years has been to protect our children from the ongoing turmoil in our family.

“I have left this matter in the hands of my legal team and ask that the privacy of our family is respected at this time,” he said.

In a statement on Thursday, Derry GAA said it “condemns all forms of domestic violence. We encourage anyone who has experienced domestic violence to report it to the relevant authorities immediately”.

Provincial secretary and CEO of Ulster GAA Brian McAvoy said: “While we cannot comment or make judgement on any specific allegation or allegations, Ulster GAA does not condone any form of domestic violence.

“We encourage and support anyone who has been a victim of such abuse not to suffer in silence but to avail of the statutory and voluntary support services that are available in the community.”

Freya McClements

Freya McClements

Freya McClements is Northern Editor of The Irish Times

Ellen O’Donoghue

Ellen O’Donoghue

Ellen O'Donoghue is an Irish Times journalist