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Baldwin formally charged in 'Rust' shooting death

Alec Baldwin
Posted at 4:01 PM, Jan 31, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-31 16:07:02-05

Alec Baldwin was formally charged Tuesday with two counts of involuntary manslaughter for the shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

She was killed on the set of "Rust," which was being filmed near Santa Fe, New Mexico, in Oct. 2021.

The film's armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who was in charge of making sure the gun wasn't loaded with real bullets, was also charged with involuntary manslaughter.

The charges are fourth-degree felonies. They are each punishable by up to 18 months in jail and a $5,000 fine, the district attorney said.

Baldwin claimed that he was told the gun was safe. He also said in a TV interview that he did not pull the trigger when the gun went off. He claimed he only cocked the hammer.

Baldwin's attorney earlier this month called the decision to charge his client a "miscarriage of justice."

"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, who assured him the gun did not have live rounds. We will fight these charges, and we will win," said attorney Luke Nikas,

The attorney for Gutierrez-Reed said they will also fight the charges.

"She did not commit involuntary manslaughter. These charges are the result of a very flawed investigation, and an inaccurate understanding of the full facts," said attorney Jason Bowles. "We intend to bring the full truth to light and believe Hannah will be exonerated of wrongdoing by a jury."

Hutchins' family, however, supports the charges, saying their "independent investigation" shows they are warranted.

"It is a comfort to the family that, in New Mexico, no one is above the law. We support the charges, will fully cooperate with this prosecution, and fervently hope the justice system works to protect the public and hold accountable those who break the law," said attorney Brian J. Panish.

No charges are being filed related to the shooting of director Joel Souza. He was wounded in the incident.