‘Rust’ shooting: Alec Baldwin sues armorer, crew for giving him loaded gun

LOS ANGELES — In a lawsuit filed Friday, actor Alec Baldwin accused several “Rust” crew members of negligence after he was given a loaded gun on the movie’s set that fired, killing cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

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According to The New York Times, the cross-complaint named Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the film’s armorer, who was in charge of handling guns and ammunition on set; Dave Halls, the first assistant director, who handed Baldwin the gun and declared it safe; Sarah Zachry, the crew member in charge of props; and Seth Kenney, described as the film’s primary supplier of guns and ammunition.

The October 2021 shooting in New Mexico also injured director Joel Souza, and investigators have not yet determined why the prop gun had live ammunition.

Attorney Luke Nikas wrote in the complaint, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, that the named individuals failed to fulfill their professional duties to maintain safety on set, the Times reported.

Baldwin, who was sued after the shooting, “seeks to clear his name” and hold the defendants “accountable for their misconduct,” Nikas wrote, adding, “This tragedy happened because live bullets were delivered to the set and loaded into the gun, Gutierrez-Reed failed to check the bullets or the gun carefully, Halls failed to check the gun carefully and yet announced the gun was safe before handing it to Baldwin, and Zachry failed to disclose that Gutierrez-Reed had been acting recklessly off set and was a safety risk to those around her.”

According to interviews conducted by the Sante Fe County Sheriff’s Office, people on the set saw and heard Halls announce that the .45 Long Colt revolver he handed to Baldwin was “cold,” meaning in industry lingo that it contained no live rounds, The Washington Post reported.

A New Mexico medical examiner later ruled Hutchins’ death accidental after she was shot in the chest, and an FBI report suggested that the gun could not have been fired without the trigger being physically pulled.

Earlier this year, Matthew Hutchins, Halyna Hutchins’s husband, filed a wrongful-death lawsuit seeking compensatory and punitive damages from Baldwin and other production entities. The lawsuit was settled in October, the Post reported.

Jason Bowles, a lawyer for Gutierrez-Reed, told the Times that he was reviewing Baldwin’s lawsuit, but attorneys representing the other defendants did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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