Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Alec Baldwin will continue to star in Rust while facing manslaughter charges

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The US actor, 64, and the film’s gunsmith Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, is charged with negligent homicide about the death of Ms. Hutchins on the film’s set in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Ms Hutchins was killed when a prop cannon held by Baldwin was fired in October 2021. Rust director Joel Souza was also injured in the Bonanza Creek Ranch shooting.

Melina Spadone, attorney for Rust Movie Productions, confirmed that the film is “still on track to be completed, starring Mr. Baldwin and directing Joel Souza.”

The project will include “on-set safety supervisors and unionized crew members” and will “prohibit any use of working weapons or ammunition,” she confirmed.

Ms Spadone added that live ammunition was and always has been prohibited on set.

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Last week, prosecutors confirmed that Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed face “alternative” charges of manslaughter on two counts, meaning a jury will not only decide if they’re guilty but what definition of involuntary manslaughter they fall under feel guilty.

The first charge may be called negligent homicide and requires proof of underlying negligence.

This allegation also includes an allegation of negligent use of a firearm, which would likely be legally consolidated.

The second charge is negligent homicide in commission of a lawful act requiring proof that more than simple negligence was involved.

Under New Mexico law, both counts are fourth-degree felonies and carry up to 18 months in prison and a $5,000 (£4,000) fine.

The second charge involves a firearm upgrade, which carries the crime a mandatory five-year prison sentence.

Assistant director David Halls also signed a plea agreement for the charge of negligent use of a deadly weapon.

District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies and Special Attorney Andrea Reeb are expected to file formal charges in New Mexico’s First Judicial District Court before the end of the month.

Baldwin’s attorney Luke Nikas of Quinn Emanuel said at the time the decision to press charges “represented a terrible miscarriage of justice.”

He added: “Mr Baldwin had no reason to believe there was a live bullet in the gun – or anywhere on the film set.

“He relied on the professionals he worked with to reassure him that the gun had no live shots. We will fight these allegations and we will win.”

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