Timeline: Prosecutors Allege Alec Baldwin’s Recklessness with Guns Before ‘Rust’ Shooting

Prosecutors are accusing Alec Baldwin of being reckless with guns on set of Rust before the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins’ ever occurred.

The Initial Incident

On the evening of Oct. 22, 2021, the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department confirmed that Baldwin discharged a gun that was being used as a prop on the set of his western drama, Rust, killing Hutchins and injuring director Joel Souza.

Alec Baldwin Speaks Out

One day after the incident, Baldwin took to Twitter to address the on-set tragedy, saying he was “fully cooperating with the police investigation.”

Baldwin Was Allegedly Told the Gun Was Safe

According to an affidavit, assistant director Dave Halls unintentionally handed Baldwin the weapon and told him it was safe to use, not knowing the prop gun was loaded with live rounds.

The Production Already Faced Troubles

Rust reportedly had a series of problems before Hutchins’ tragic death, including union crew members walking off set in protest of “poor” working conditions and at least one incident of a prop gun misfiring.

Rust Shuts Down Production

Shortly after the shooting, the Rust production team sent a memo announcing they were wrapping the set until investigations were complete.

Assistant Director Dave Halls Had Been Fired From Past Productions

According to reports, Halls had faced complaints of unsafe practices and disregard for safety protocols with firearms on previous productions.

Rust Director Joel Souza Says He’s “Gutted”

In a statement, Souza said he was “gutted” by the loss of his friend and colleague, Halyna Hutchins.

More Details From People on Set Emerge

The chief electrician on Rust accused the film’s armorer and producers of “negligence and unprofessionalism,” saying he held Hutchins as she died.

Firearms Expert Weighs In

A firearms expert explained that the gun used was a real, working firearm, not a “prop gun,” which is a misnomer.

Rust Armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed Breaks Her Silence

Gutierrez-Reed’s attorneys said she was “devastated” and extended condolences to Hutchins’ family, claiming production became unsafe due to various factors.

Alec Baldwin Speaks on Camera

On Oct. 30, 2021, Baldwin addressed the incident on camera, saying he was ordered not to comment due to the ongoing investigation but that Hutchins was his friend.

Assistant Director Dave Halls Speaks Out

On Nov. 2, 2021, Halls released a statement saying he was “shocked and saddened” by Hutchins’ death.

Alec Baldwin Defends Working Conditions

On Nov. 2, 2021, Baldwin shared screenshots defending the working conditions on Rust, claiming concerns were heard and addressed.

Too Early to Press Charges

The Santa Fe County Sheriff said it was “too early” to discuss possible charges at the time.

Hannah Gutierrez-Reed’s Lawyers Insist She Did Firearms Training

Gutierrez-Reed’s lawyer said she did firearms training with the actors, including Baldwin, and emphasized never pointing a gun at someone.

Lawsuit Settled

Nearly a year after the shooting, Baldwin settled a wrongful death lawsuit with Hutchins’ family.

Production to Resume

As part of the settlement, it was revealed that production on Rust would resume, with Hutchins’ husband as an executive producer.

Moving From New Mexico

In late 2022, it was announced that Rust production would not return to New Mexico and was considering other locations like California.

Baldwin Files His Own Lawsuits

In November 2022, Baldwin filed a lawsuit against the armorer and several other Rust crew members for negligence.

Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed Charged

In January 2023, Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed were charged with two counts of involuntary manslaughter.

Baldwin Reacts to the Charges

Baldwin’s attorney said the decision “distorts Halyna Hutchins’ tragic death” and they would “fight these charges, and…win.”

Gutierrez-Reed Reacts to the Charges

Gutierrez-Reed’s attorney called the charges “the result of a very flawed investigation.”

The Hutchins Family Reacts

The Hutchins family lawyer said they “support the charges” and want “accountability.”

Baldwin Sued by Hutchins’ Family

In February 2023, Hutchins’ family in Ukraine filed a lawsuit against Baldwin and other Rust producers.

Baldwin Gets Charge Dropped

In April 2023, prosecutors announced they were dropping the firearms enhancement charge against Baldwin, reducing his potential prison sentence.

Rust Resumes Filming

Filming on Rust resumed in April 2023 at a ranch in Montana, with photos showing Baldwin in character.

Baldwin’s Wrongful Death Settlement Approved

In May 2023, a judge approved Baldwin’s settlement from the wrongful death lawsuit filed by Hutchins’ husband.

Gutierrez-Reed Allegedly Hungover on Set

Prosecutors claimed in June 2023 that Gutierrez-Reed was likely hungover when she loaded the live round that killed Hutchins.

Gutierrez-Reed Charged Again

In June 2023, prosecutors filed a new charge of tampering with evidence against Gutierrez-Reed.

Gutierrez-Reed Accused of Transferring Cocaine

Documents claimed Gutierrez-Reed transferred cocaine to avoid prosecution over Hutchins’ death.

Gutierrez-Reed Pleads Not Guilty

Gutierrez-Reed formally entered a not guilty plea in August 2023 to involuntary manslaughter and tampering charges.

Special Prosecutors to Present Case to Grand Jury

In October 2023, prosecutors announced plans to present the Rust shooting case to a grand jury.

Baldwin Charged With Involuntary Manslaughter

In January 2024, Baldwin was indicted by a grand jury on a charge of involuntary manslaughter.

Baldwin Demands Speedy Trial

Baldwin’s legal team filed documents demanding a speedy trial to “minimize public vilification.”

SAG-AFTRA Defends Baldwin

The actors’ union said it was not Baldwin’s responsibility as an actor to inspect firearms on set.

Baldwin Pleads Not Guilty

In late January 2024, Baldwin formally entered a not guilty plea to the involuntary manslaughter charge.

Trial Date Canceled

In February 2024, a judge reassignment led to the cancellation of Baldwin’s scheduled trial date.

Gutierrez-Reed Found Guilty

In March 2024, a jury found Gutierrez-Reed guilty of involuntary manslaughter in Hutchins’ death.

Gutierrez-Reed Asks For a New Trial

Gutierrez-Reed’s lawyers filed for a new trial, arguing jury instruction wording may have been confusing.

Gutierrez-Reed Sentenced

In April 2024, Gutierrez-Reed was sentenced to 18 months in prison for her “reckless” actions leading to Hutchins’ death.

Prosecutors Want Gutierrez-Reed to Testify

Ahead of Baldwin’s trial, prosecutors are seeking to grant Gutierrez-Reed “use immunity” to compel her testimony.

Prosecutors Allege Baldwin Was ‘Aggressive’ and ‘Erratic’

Court documents claimed Baldwin engaged in “horseplay” with guns and was insistent on ignoring safety protocols.

Prosecutors Provide Further Details on Baldwin’s Alleged Conduct

The prosecutors claimed that Baldwin fired a blank round directly at a crew member while using that person to establish his line of sight for the camera angle. They also alleged that when filming resumed months after Hutchins’ death, Baldwin as a producer insisted on not following standard industry gun safety protocols and practices.

Rust Wraps Filming

In May 2023, Baldwin celebrated wrapping production on Rust with an Instagram post praising his co-stars and the crew for getting the film completed, calling it “nothing less than a miracle.”

Rust Settles with New Mexico Workplace Safety Regulators

In February 2024, Rust Movie Productions LLC reached a settlement with New Mexico’s Occupational Health and Safety Bureau, agreeing to pay a $100,000 fine after an initial $136,793 penalty for alleged safety failures was downgraded.

Rust Assistant Director Sentenced

In March 2024, assistant director David Halls was sentenced to six months probation after pleading no contest to a charge of negligent use of a deadly weapon related to Hutchins’ death.

Dismissal of Baldwin’s Charges Explained

When prosecutors dismissed the involuntary manslaughter charge against Baldwin in April 2023, they stated that “new facts were revealed that demand further investigation” but noted the decision “does not absolve Mr. Baldwin of criminal culpability.”

Filming Location Moved to Montana

It was announced in February 2023 that the Rust production would relocate its Western set to the Yellowstone Film Ranch in Paradise Valley, Montana after originally planning to move from New Mexico to California.

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