Alec Baldwin is set to be charged with involuntary manslaughter related to the fatal shooting of Halyna Hutchings on the film set of Rust in 2021. The actor is among a number of workers facing prosecution in relation to the incident.
Hannah Gutierrez Reed, who was the movie’s armourer, in charge of overseeing the weapons, is also set to be charged with involuntary manslaughter. Production assistant David Halls has agreed to plead guilty to a misdemeanour charge of negligent use of a deadly weapon and will spend six months serving probation.
The New Mexico legal team also confirmed Rust’s director, Joel Souza, will not face any charges in connection with the tragic incident. Souza had also been shot alongside Hutchings.
Both individuals were shot during the set-up for a scene at a ranch on the outskirts of Santa Fe on October 21, 2021. Alec Baldwin was pointing a pistol at Ms Hutchings, who was the film’s cinematographer, when the gun went off, killing her and wounding Mr Souza.
Mary Carmack-Altwies, who is the Santa Fe District Attorney, announced the charges and plea deal on Thursday (January 19). She confirmed the charges have not yet been filed but would be before the end of the month.
The statement, which was posted to social media, reads: “On my watch, no one is above the law, and everyone deserves justice. If any of these three people – Alec Baldwin, Hannah Gutierrez Reed or David Halls – had done their job, Halyna Hutchins would be alive today.”
Baldwin’s attorney, Luke Nikas, has said his client had “no reason to believe there was a live bullet in the gun” on the day of the fatal film set shooting and has condemned the charges, labelling them as a “terrible miscarriage of justice.” He said in a statement: “We will fight these charges, and we will win.”
While representatives of Ms Gutierrez Reed also believe jurors would acquit his client of any wrongdoing.
Brian Panish, the attorney for the victim’s husband, Matt Hutchings, also issued a response to the charges. He thanked the Santa Fe prosecutors and called the announcement a “comfort”, adding: “We fervently hope the justice system works to protect the public and hold accountable those who break the law.”