Movie weapons supervisor waives preliminary hearing in fatal shooting by Alec Baldwin

by Madison Thomas
Alec Baldwin shooting case

The woman responsible for overseeing the use of weapons on the movie set where Alec Baldwin accidentally shot and killed a cinematographer has decided not to have a preliminary hearing, which would have involved testimonies from numerous witnesses, including those who witnessed the shooting. Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer based in Arizona, waived her right to a courtroom review of the evidence related to the charges of involuntary manslaughter and evidence-tampering in the 2021 shooting of Halyna Hutchins on the set of the Western movie “Rust.” She also waived her right to a review of charges by a grand jury.

Her defense attorney, Jason Bowles, maintains that the death of Halyna Hutchins was a tragic accident and argues that Gutierrez-Reed did not commit any crime. Gutierrez-Reed has not entered a plea to the charges yet and could face up to three years in prison if convicted.

In contrast, the safety coordinator and assistant director of the movie, David Halls, has already pleaded no contest to a charge of unsafe handling of a firearm and received six months’ probation.

Charges against Alec Baldwin were dropped earlier, leaving Gutierrez-Reed as the only remaining defendant. Baldwin stated that the gun fired accidentally while following instructions to point it towards Hutchins, but not pulling the trigger. Prosecutors, however, retained the right to refile charges against Baldwin and conducted additional weapons testing to investigate whether the gun’s hammer was intentionally modified.

It is still unclear how live ammunition ended up on the film set and in the .45-caliber revolver. Authorities say Gutierrez-Reed mistakenly loaded the gun with live ammunition during a lunch break when it should have been filled with inert dummy rounds.

Recently, prosecutors filed an evidence-tampering charge against Gutierrez-Reed, alleging that she handed a small bag of narcotics to a colleague during police interviews on the day of the shooting. Bowles criticized the prosecution, claiming they are attempting “character assassination.”

The filming of “Rust” resumed in April in Montana after an agreement was reached with the cinematographer’s husband, making him an executive producer. Rust Movie Productions, the company behind the movie, paid a $100,000 fine to New Mexico workplace safety regulators due to “serious” safety failures, although not deemed willful, including incidents of misfires on set before the fatal shooting.

Following the incident, the film industry has started shifting towards using replicas and digital-effects gunfire instead of real guns that fire blanks. However, efforts like gun bans through legislation, studio requirements, or union demands have not materialized yet.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Alec Baldwin shooting case

What happened on the movie set involving Alec Baldwin and a cinematographer?

On the movie set of the Western film “Rust,” Alec Baldwin accidentally shot and killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

Who was responsible for overseeing the weapons on the movie set?

The Arizona-based armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, was responsible for overseeing the use of weapons on the movie set.

Did Hannah Gutierrez-Reed face any charges related to the shooting?

Yes, she faced charges of involuntary manslaughter and evidence-tampering in connection with the 2021 shooting.

What does Hannah Gutierrez-Reed’s defense attorney say about the shooting?

Hannah Gutierrez-Reed’s defense attorney, Jason Bowles, described the death of Halyna Hutchins as a tragic accident and asserted that Gutierrez-Reed committed no crime.

What were the charges against the movie’s safety coordinator and assistant director?

The safety coordinator and assistant director, David Halls, faced a charge of unsafe handling of a firearm.

What happened to the charges against Alec Baldwin?

Prosecutors dropped charges against Alec Baldwin, as they considered the shooting to be an accidental incident.

Are there any concerns about how live ammunition got onto the film set?

Authorities have not fully explained how live ammunition found its way onto the set, causing the fatal shooting.

How has the film industry responded to the incident?

Following the fatal shooting on “Rust,” the film industry has shown a significant shift towards replacing real guns with replicas and digital-effects gunfire.

Are there any ongoing investigations or additional charges?

Prosecutors have reserved the right to refile charges against Alec Baldwin and have filed an evidence-tampering charge against Hannah Gutierrez-Reed.

What was the response of Rust Movie Productions to the incident?

Rust Movie Productions paid a fine to New Mexico workplace safety regulators for safety failures on the set.

Have there been any changes to gun use in the film industry since the incident?

The incident prompted discussions about changing gun use practices in the film industry, but significant changes like gun bans through legislation or studio requirements have not occurred yet.

More about Alec Baldwin shooting case

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entertainmentjunkie August 6, 2023 - 1:02 am

charges dropped against baldwin, but hannah gutierrez-reed facing it all. tough situation for everyone involved, hope they find the truth.

actionmoviefan August 6, 2023 - 5:30 am

rusty props, digital guns, not the same as real guns, ugh. industry shifting but not the same thrill! need to figure out how to make it safer tho.

movienews247 August 6, 2023 - 4:48 pm

gotta be careful on sets! glad to see some changes tho with gun safety. hope it leads to better practices in the future!

hollywoodgossipgirl August 6, 2023 - 6:20 pm

omg, can’t believe live ammo was there on the set! how did it even get there??? industry needs to be more careful with gun safety now, smh.

cinemalover88 August 6, 2023 - 7:36 pm

hannah gutierrez-reed really messed up, smh. they should have beeen more watchful with those guns. why didnt they check properly??

moviefan23 August 6, 2023 - 9:09 pm

wow, so sad accident! alec baldwin should have been more carefull!! but good to see that rust movie resumed filming after that tragedy. hope they put safety first now.


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