Alec Baldwin isin the deadly shooting on the set of the movie “Rust” in 2021, but his lawyer said the actor plans to “fight” the charges.
“Mr. Baldwin had no reason to believe that there was a live bullet in the gun, or in any part of the film set,” Nikas said. “He trusted the professionals he worked with, who assured him that the gun did not have real bullets. We will fight these charges and we will win.”
While filming “Rust,” a Western that Baldwin starred in and produced, in New Mexico, Baldwin, 64, was holding a gun and rehearsing a scene when the gun went off, killing the cinematographer.. Director Joel Souza was injured.
After a lengthy investigation, New Mexico District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies said in a statement Thursday that Baldwin and Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the gunsmith who supervised the firearms on set, were each charged with two counts of manslaughter.
“After a thorough review of the evidence and the laws of the State of New Mexico, I have determined that there is sufficient evidence to bring criminal charges against Alec Baldwin and other members of the ‘Rust’ film crew,” said Carmack-Altwies. “On my watch, no one is above the law and everyone deserves justice.”
Charges will be filed in late January and Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed will receive a summons to appear in court, Carmack-Altwies said in the statement. Prosecutors will waive a grand jury and the judge will determine whether there is probable cause to move forward to trial, the statement said.
In a statement to CBS News, Nikas said the decision “distorts the tragic death of Halyna Hutchins and represents a terrible miscarriage of justice.”
Manslaughter is a fourth degree felony. Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed each face up to a year and a half in jail and a $5,000 fine. Because the offense was committed with a weapon, the charges also include a provision that could result in a mandatory five years in prison.
In a statement after the charges were announced, Gutierrez-Reed’s attorneys said she did not commit manslaughter and called the shooting a “tragic accident.”
body cameraby the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Office shows Baldwin holding the gun before the incident, and Hutchins and Souza on the ground surrounded by first responders after they were shot. The video also shows Baldwin telling two officers that he did not pull the trigger. He is also seen telling the officers that he did not know who put a live bullet in the gun.
In addition to criminal investigation,they were archived.
In November 2022, Baldwin sued Gutierrez-Reed and several other crew members for negligence. In the lawsuit, Baldwin alleges that he was not responsible for the safety of the device and that he did not know that there were real bullets in the gun.
The lawsuit alleges that Gutierrez-Reed “did not check the bullets or the gun carefully” and assistant warden David Halls, who gave the gun to Baldwin, “did not check the gun carefully and yet announced that the gun was secure before handing it over to Baldwin.
The lawsuit also alleges prop master Sarah Zachry “failed to disclose that Gutierrez-Reed had been acting recklessly off set and was a safety risk to those around her.”
Baldwin “did not know, nor did he have reason to know, any of these facts,” the lawsuit says.
The Hutchins family hadand the producers of the film for wrongful death. He in October 2022.
Baldwin, Gutierrez-Reed, and Hallsdue to the alleged negligence of dozens of crew members.
Gutierrez-Reedthe ammunition and weapons supplier for the film, accusing him and his company of supplying a mix of dummy and real cartridges.
Gutierrez-Reed and the ammunition supplier have faced scrutiny in the case. An attorney for Gutierrez-Reed has said the gunsmith did not put a live bullet in the gun that killed Hutchins and believes he was the victim of sabotage. Authorities said they have found no evidence of that.
In addition to announcing the charges against Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed, Carmack-Altwies said Halls has reached a plea agreement on one count of negligent use of a deadly weapon. Under the agreement, the deputy director will serve a suspended sentence and six months of probation.