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Alec Baldwin charged with involuntary manslaughter

Actor Alec Baldwin and an armourer have been formally charged with involuntary manslaughter over the death of a cinematographer on the set of the movie Rust.

February 1, 2023
By Morgan Lee
1 February 2023

Actor Alec Baldwin and a weapons specialist have been formally charged with involuntary manslaughter in the fatal shooting of a cinematographer on a New Mexico movie set.

Santa Fe District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies filed the charging documents on Tuesday naming Baldwin and Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who supervised weapons on the set of the Western film Rust.

The filing comes nearly two weeks after she first announced that Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed would be prosecuted for what authorities have described as a pattern of criminal disregard for safety.

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

Halyna Hutchins died shortly after being wounded during rehearsals at a ranch on the outskirts of Santa Fe on October 21, 2021. Baldwin was pointing a pistol at Hutchins when the gun went off, killing her and wounding the director, Joel Souza.

Prosecutors have said that Baldwin’s involvement as a producer and as the person who fired the gun weighed in the decision to file charges.

A message requesting comment from Baldwin’s lawyer was not immediately returned.

Hutchins’ death already has led to new safety precautions in the film industry.

The decision to charge Baldwin marks a stunning turn of events for an A-list actor whose 40-year career included the early blockbuster The Hunt for Red October and a starring role in the sitcom 30 Rock, In recent years, Baldwin was known for his impression of former US president Donald Trump on Saturday Night Live.

Carmack-Altwies had told The Associated Press that the set was “really being run pretty fast and loose” and that Baldwin should have known there had been previous misfires on the set and that multiple people had brought up safety concerns.

She added that Baldwin was the one who pointed the gun and pulled the trigger.

Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed will be issued a summons to appear in court. Prosecutors will forgo a grand jury and rely on a judge to determine if there is sufficient evidence to move toward trial. It could take up to 60 days for decision.

Involuntary manslaughter can involve a killing that happens while a defendant is doing something that is lawful but dangerous and is acting negligently or without caution.

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