Alec Baldwin to be prosecuted in “rust” case
“We are pleased with the decision to dismiss the case against Alec Baldwin and encourage a proper investigation into the facts and circumstances of this tragic accident,” the actor’s lawyers told IndieWire.
Criminal charges against Alec Baldwin in the ongoing “Rust” case are expected to be dropped soon, and Baldwin’s attorneys told IndieWire they are “pleased” with the decision.
“We are pleased with the decision to dismiss Alec Baldwin and encourage a proper investigation into the facts and circumstances surrounding this tragic accident,” Baldwin’s attorneys, Luke Nikas and Alex Spiro, said in a statement obtained by IndieWire.
A statement follows a report Deadline saying that involuntary manslaughter charges against Baldwin in the fatal shooting of “Rust” cameraman Halyna Hutchins will be officially dropped Thursday.
A representative of the New Mexico District Attorney’s Office, which is investigating the case against Baldwin, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Filming on “Rust” has reportedly resumed in Montana as of today, and Baldwin remains involved with the project.
Baldwin pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter charges, and back in February the charges against him were downgraded to a maximum sentence of 18 months. Baldwin was previously charged with firearms enhancement, which would have carried a maximum sentence of five years in prison. However, his lawyers argued that the prosecutor and the special prosecutor made a “fundamental legal error” in charging the actor under the said law, as the law did not go into effect until October 2021, seven months after the “Rust” shooting.
Baldwin and the film’s bodyguard, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who are currently charged with the same involuntary manslaughter, were indicted on Jan. 31. David Halls, the film’s first assistant director, accepted a plea deal to a misdemeanor charge back in January. he did not receive a prison sentence.
In addition to the downgrading of the charges, two new special prosecutors, Kari Morrison and Jason Lewis, were appointed to the case, while New Mexico State Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies stepped aside from the case.
On Monday, prosecutors submitted the list to the state witnesses for preliminary hearings Among the planned witnesses are Rust director Joel Souza, the film’s ammunition supplier Seth Kenney, and crew member Lane Luper, who left the set on the day of the accident for safety reasons. It is unclear but unlikely that the hearing will go ahead as planned.
Baldwin maintained throughout that he did not pull the trigger on the gun that fired, which was later found to contain live ammunition, despite the FBI’s report that this would be impossible.
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