‘Rust’ Armorer Found Guilty of Manslaughter in Alec Baldwin Shooting

'Rust' Armorer Found Guilty of Manslaughter in Alec Baldwin Shooting

Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer on the set of the film “Rust”, has been found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins. Gutierrez-Reed was responsible for loading Alec Baldwin’s revolver with dummy rounds, but a live round was mistakenly included. Mr. Baldwin is also charged with involuntary manslaughter and is set to stand trial in July.

The two-week trial in Santa Fe, New Mexico, focused on Gutierrez-Reed’s responsibility for the presence of live ammunition on a set where it was prohibited. Prosecutors presented evidence of a pattern of negligence by Gutierrez-Reed, demonstrating unsafe firearm handling practices and her failure to follow industry safety standards.

The defense argued that Gutierrez-Reed could not be held criminally responsible, as there was no way for her to know live rounds were present. They also questioned the adequacy of the police investigation.

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After just two and a half hours of deliberation, the jury reached a guilty verdict. Gutierrez-Reed was immediately taken into custody and faces up to 18 months in prison.

The trial included testimony from crew members, firearms experts, and the state’s occupational health & safety inspector, who criticized the “Rust” production’s lack of safety protocols.

Alec Baldwin’s Responsibility

While the focus was on Gutierrez-Reed, the trial also touched on Baldwin’s role in the shooting. Video evidence showed him violating safety protocols, pointing the gun at Hutchins, and firing after scenes ended. Testimony suggested that Baldwin’s power as both producer and lead actor contributed to a disregard for gun safety measures.

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Legal experts believe that evidence from Gutierrez-Reed’s trial may be used against Baldwin in his upcoming trial. The defense for Gutierrez-Reed sought to shift some blame, highlighting Baldwin’s power on set and questioning whether he had prevented her from adequately performing her safety duties.

Key Takeaways

The verdict highlights the importance of strict firearm safety on film sets. It also raises questions about Alec Baldwin’s liability in the shooting, with his own trial looming.

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