Actor Alec Baldwin charged with involuntary manslaughter over shooting on Rust film set


lec Baldwin was distracted by a phone call to his family during firearms training on a movie set where he fatally shot a cinematographer, prosectors claim.

Mr Baldwin’s “reckless deviation from known standards and practice and protocol” directly caused the death of Halyna Hutchins, the Santa Fe District Attorney’s Office has alleged.

In a damning report, the DA alleged the actor had shown “wilful disregard” for the safety of others in the days leading up to the incident on the Rust movie set in New Mexico.

Baldwin was not present for “mandatory” firearms training, instead undergoing a 30-minute on-set session, during which he was distracted by a phone call to his family, the DA said.

It comes as both Baldwin and the film’s armourer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed were formally charged with two charges of involuntary manslaughter stemming from the incident in October 2021.

Under New Mexico law, the charges are a fourth-degree felony and are punishable by up to 18 months in jail and a 5,000 dollar (£4,000) fine.

Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed maintain their innocence and have vowed to fight the charges.

They were formally filed on Tuesday by the Santa Fe District Attorney’s Office, along with a statement of probable cause.

The statement said that on the day of the shooting, there were “no less than a dozen acts, or omissions of recklessness” on the set in the period prior to the incident.

“The evidence and statements documented in this affidavit confirm many instances of extremely reckless acts or reckless failures to act by Baldwin in a 10-day period,” the statement read.

“Evidence clearly shows that none of the incidents or issues were addressed by Baldwin, in his position as actor or producer, to mitigate future occurrences of recklessness, correct reckless behaviour, or correct training deficiencies.

“Baldwin’s deviation from known standards, practice and protocol directly caused the fatal death of Hutchins.”

Referring to the moments leading up to the shooting itself, the statement added that Baldwin had pointed the weapon at Ms Hutchins which was another deviation from protocol.

“Whether guided by (Hutchins’) directions or not, Baldwin knew the first rule of gun safety is never point a gun at someone you don’t intend on shooting,” it read.

“In addition, always assume a gun is loaded. Had Baldwin performed the required safety checks with the armorer, Reed, this tragedy would not have occurred.”

In a separate statement, district attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies said: “Today we have taken another important step in securing justice for Halyna Hutchins.

“In New Mexico, no-one is above the law and justice will be served.”

Luke Nikas, Baldwin’s attorney, branded the charges “a terrible miscarriage of justice”.

He said in a previous statement: “Mr Baldwin had no reason to believe there was a live bullet in the gun – or anywhere on the movie set.

“He relied on the professionals with whom he worked.”

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