Last week, during his first interview since the tragedy on the set of indie film Rust, Alec Baldwin claimed that he didn’t pull the trigger on the prop gun that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins. He also said that he’s “been told by people who are in the know… that it’s highly unlikely that I would be charged with anything criminally.” But Santa Fe County District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies, who’s leading the investigation, says the actor and several others could still be charged for their roles in the event.
“Everyone involved in the handling and use of firearms on the set had a duty to behave in a manner such that the safety of others was protected,” Carmack-Altwies told TMZ. “It appears that certain actions and inactions contributed to this outcome.”
Investigations in the tragedy are still under way, and Carmack-Altwies emphasized that no firm decisions have been made. “Once I have had the opportunity to review the complete investigation, certain individuals may be criminally culpable for his/her actions and/or inactions on the set of Rust,” she added.
During his tearful interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos last Thursday, Baldwin articulated that he wanted to do everything in his power to clear his name before the investigation reaches a conclusion. “I really feel like I can’t wait for that process to end in February or March,” he said, adding that he would “never point a gun at anyone.” “I would go to any lengths to undo what happened.”
As a refresher: On October 21st, a gun Baldwin was holding was discharged on the New Mexico set of Rust, killing Hutchins and wounding director Joel Souza. “In the protocols of the business, [armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed] would hand me the gun 99 percent of the time, whatever, the preponderance of the time,” Baldwin recalled, claiming he was told the gun was empty when he was directed to point it at Hutchins.
“Everyone was shocked … the gun was supposed to be empty,” Baldwin said. “I was told I was handed an empty gun. She goes down, I thought to myself, ‘Did she faint?’ The notion that there was a live round in that gun did not dawn on me until 45 minutes or an hour later.”
While Baldwin seems pretty confident that he’s innocent in the situation, Consequence’s recent investigations found that Gutierrez-Reed and Rust assistant director Dave Halls have histories peppered with other safety protocol violations.