The armorer in charges of managing the prop weapons on the set of the Alec Baldwin movie “Rust” has pointed a finger at the actor and producer in relation to the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
Hutchins was fatally shot in October 2021 during a scene rehearsal in which Alec Baldwin was handling a gun he and other crew members believed was “cold” — meaning it didn’t contain any live rounds. The weapon discharged, apparently while it was pointed at Hutchins. Hutchins was killed and the film’s director Joel Souza was injured by the same bullet.
As CrimeOnline has reported, Baldwin had vehemently denied any responsibility for the tragedy. In a court filing in response to a wrongful death lawsuit brought by Hutchins’ husband and father of their young child, Baldwin’s lawyer said his contract exempts him from any responsibiity and claimed the other members of the crew failed in maintaining safety standards on set.
In that filing, Baldwin put responsibility on Hutchins, saying she told him to point the gun in the direction of where she was working on set.
“She directed Baldwin to hold the gun higher, to a point where it was directed toward her,” Baldwin’s lawyer said in the court filings. “She was looking carefully at the monitor and then at Baldwin, and then back again, as she gave these instructions.”
“Baldwin asked Hutchins whether she wanted to see him cock the gun, as the script required. She responded yes,” the filing claims.
Lead armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed, who has been the subject of much scrutiny following the tragedy, issued a statement emphatically challenging Baldwin’s claims that he is not responsible. In the statement, Gutierrez Reed claims for the first time that she had no idea were rehearsing the scene, and said she should have been called in to double check the prop weapons for safety.
“The crew had a duty and responsibility to call Hannah in for inspection of the gun and safety instruction before any gun scene was conducted,” the armorer said in a statement obtained by CNN.
Gutierrez Reed also charged that Baldwin violated safety protcol in his handling of the prop weapon, regardless of whether he believed it did not contain any live rounds.
“Mr. Baldwin knew that he could never point a firearm at crew members under any circumstances and had a duty of safety to his fellow crew members,”
Gutierrez Reed reportedly said.
“Yet he did point the gun at Halyna before the fatal incident against all rules and common sense.”
The investigation into Hutchins’ death is ongoing, and no one has been criminally charged.
[Feature image: A Santa Fe County Sheriff’s deputy briefly talks with a security guard at the entrance to the Bonanza Creek Ranch in Santa Fe, N.M., Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. A camera operator told authorities that Alec Baldwin had been careful with weapons on the set of the film “Rust” before the actor shot and killed a cinematographer with a gun he’d been told was safe to use, court records released Sunday show. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)]