The rookie armorer who was charge of weapons on the movie set where a cinematographer was killed is not taking responsibility for the live round inside the weapon that Alec Baldwin discharged.
As previously reported, Hannah Gutierrez Reed was in charge of prop weapons on the set of “Rust,” where cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed after Baldwin’s gun discharged and fired a projectile into Hutchins and the film’s director Joel Souza, who survived.
The guns used on set were not meant to have any live rounds, and the investigation into how the accident happened is still ongoing. A week after Hutchins’ death, Reed has released a statement through her lawyer, and does not appear to be taking any responsibility for the deadly error. The armorer claims that when she last handled the gun it did not contain any live rounds, and that she has no idea where the ammo came from.
In the statement obtained by Variety, Reed, 24, also hit back at what the statement describes as media slander.
Read the full statement below:
First Hannah would like to extend her deepest and most sincere condolences to the family and friends of Halyna. She was an inspirational woman in film who Hannah looked up to. She also offers her thoughts and prayers for a speedy recovery to Joel. Hannah is devastated and completely beside herself over the events that have transpired.
She would like to address some untruths that have been told to the media, which have falsely portrayed her and slandered her. Safety is Hannah’s number one priority on set. Ultimately this set would never have been compromised if live ammo were not introduced. Hannah has no idea where the live rounds came from. Hannah and the prop master gained control over the guns and she never witnessed anyone shoot live rounds with these guns and nor would she permit that. They were locked up every night and at lunch and there’s no way a single one of them was unaccounted for or being shot by crew members. Hannah still, to this day, has never had an accidental discharge. The first one on this set was the prop master and the second was a stunt man after Hannah informed him his gun was hot with blanks.
Hannah was hired on two positions on this film, which made it extremely difficult to focus on her job as an armorer. She fought for training, days to maintain weapons, and proper time to prepare for gunfire but ultimately was overruled by production and her department. The whole production set became unsafe due to various factors, including lack of safety meetings. This was not the fault of Hannah.
Hannah and her legal team will address more of these rumors and the whole incident in an upcoming statement next week.
Alec Baldwin released a statement shortly after the tragedy in which he also did not take responsibility for the accident but did not criticize or point fingers at anyone else.
“There are no words to convey my shock and sadness regarding the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother and deeply admired colleague of ours. I’m fully cooperating with the police investigation to address how this tragedy occurred and am in touch with her husband, offering my support to him and his family. My heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna,” the statement read.
Baldwin did later retweet news reports that appeared to direct blame away from him.
[Feature image: Alec Baldwin, AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File Instagram; Halyna Hutchins/Instagram]