ROCKLAND — A 53-year-old Union man was sentenced Wednesday to 18 months in prison for sexually assaulting a child back in 2016.

Frank H. Gallagher

Frank H. Gallagher was sentenced Jan. 18 by Justice Jeffrey Hjelm in the Knox County court to seven years in prison with all but 18 months suspended for Class B unlawful sexual contact. Gallagher will be on probation for four years upon his release from prison.

He has been held in jail since his arrest in August.

An arrest warrant had been issued for Gallagher in March 2018 on the unlawful sexual contact charge for the assault that occurred in July 2016 in Union. He was not apprehended, however, until August 2022 when he was arrested in Waldo County.

Assistant District Attorney Kathryn King said the victim, who was 9 years old at the time of the assault and now 15, supports the recommended sentence negotiated between the prosecution and defense.

Justice Hjelm said 18 months was on the generous side for Gallagher but that he would accept the recommendation and impose the sentence. He noted the victim supported the agreement and wants to get past this part of her life.

He chastised Gallagher for being in a position of trust and authority and abusing that.

An affidavit filed by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office at the time of his arrest stated that a witness said Gallagher had a history of running when he got into trouble and left the house in Union and did not return when he knew police were looking to talk to him about the accusation.