National News from ABC

Armorer on ‘Rust’ set accuses Alec Baldwin, others of failing to follow safety procedures

Jeff Neira/ABC via Getty Images

(NEW YORK) -- The armorer on the set of Rust, the movie that was being filmed when Alec Baldwin fatally shot the film's cinematographer, accused Baldwin of failing to follow safety rules and procedures on set in response to the arbitration the actor recently filed seeking to avoid liability.

Baldwin was holding an antique revolver during a dress rehearsal on Oct. 21, 2021, at the Bonanza Creek Ranch near Santa Fe, New Mexico, when the prop gun discharged a live round, killing 42-year-old Halyna Hutchins and injuring the director, 48-year-old Joel Souza, according to the Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office.

The attorney for Rust armorer Hannah Gutierrez, the daughter of long-time film industry armorer Thell Reed, released a statement Sunday in response to Baldwin's recent court filing, describing the rehearsal as "impromptu," and alleging that Gutierrez was not called inside the church to inspect the weapons before they were brought out. At the time, Gutierrez "had prop duties that she was forced to deal with," as production was "forcing her to take on more responsibilities for props," Jason Bowles, Gutierrez's attorney, said in the statement Sunday.

In addition, the "video village," the area around the monitor on set, was not operating on the day of the shooting, which "further prevented Hannah from knowing what was going on inside the Church," Bowles said.

Baldwin and others had a "duty and responsibility" to call her to inspect the weapon before any scenes involving it were conducted, Bowles said.

"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," Bowles said. "Yet he did point the gun at Halyna before the fatal incident against all rules and common sense."

Baldwin did not accept Gutierrez's offer to train him on the cross draw, a "dangerous" method of carrying a handgun that started in the Old West, Bowles alleged.

In the recent arbitration filing, Baldwin's lawyers argued others were at fault for Hutchin’s death and that his contract protects him from any financial responsibility in the incident.

"This is a rare instance when the system broke down, and someone should be held legally culpable for the tragic consequences," the court document, filed on Friday, states. "That person is not Alec Baldwin."

The filing also includes a look inside the scene and script Baldwin was rehearsing when the gun went off as well as text messages between Hutchins’s husband and Baldwin.

Hutchins was killed by a live round inside the gun, authorities said.

In January, Gutierrez filed a lawsuit accusing the ammunition supplier of including live rounds in a box that was only supposed to contain dummy rounds.

"It cannot be over emphasized that live rounds should never have been on set and our investigation continues to press for the truth on how they got there," Bowles said on Sunday.

Charges have not yet been filed in the shooting.

ABC News' Doug Lantz, Eboni Griffin, Kaylee Hartung, Alyssa Pone and Morgan Winsor contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Advertise Here

Download Our App

Listen With Alexa

WXHC.com Archives