February 25, 2024
A picture of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, who died after being shot by Alec Baldwin on the set of his film “Rust”, is displayed at a vigil in her honor in Albuquerque, New Mexico. REUTERS/Kevin Mohatt

Alec Baldwin might once more face felony fees over the deadly taking pictures of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on a New Mexico movie set, with particular prosecutors asserting Tuesday they plan to current their investigation of the actor to a grand jury.

Baldwin, 65, had initially been charged with involuntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter within the fee of a lawful act stemming from the Oct. 21, 2021, taking pictures of Hutchins with a prop gun wielded by the actor on the set of “Rust.”

However in April, prosecutors stated “new details” had emerged that left them unable to right away proceed with the felony case towards Baldwin based mostly on “the details and proof turned over by regulation enforcement in its present kind.” They warned, nonetheless, that the choice “doesn’t absolve Mr. Baldwin of felony culpability and fees could also be re-filed.”

On Tuesday, particular prosecutors Kari T. Morrissey and Jason J. Lewis stated that’s now a chance, with plans to current the case to a Santa Fe grand jury throughout the subsequent two months to “decide whether or not possible trigger exists to bind Baldwin over on felony fees.”

“After in depth investigation over the previous a number of months, extra details have come to mild that we imagine present Mr. Baldwin has felony culpability within the dying of Halyna Hutchins and the taking pictures of (director) Joel Souza,” Morrissey and Lewis stated in a joint assertion. “We imagine the suitable plan of action is to allow a panel of New Mexico residents to find out from right here whether or not Mr. Baldwin ought to be held over for felony trial.”

Information of the attainable renewed felony case was first reported by NBC Information. An unidentified supply informed the community that prosecutors had discovered new proof suggesting a connection between Baldwin — a producer of “Rust” — and “recklessness round security requirements on the set.”

In an announcement to NBC Information, Baldwin attorneys Luke Nikas and Alex Spiro stated, “It’s unlucky {that a} horrible tragedy has been become this misguided prosecution. We’ll reply any fees in courtroom.”

Hutchins, 42, was fatally shot with a bullet discharged from a prop weapon wielded by Baldwin, who was holding the gun whereas serving to to set digital camera angles for an upcoming scene. The bullet additionally struck and wounded Souza.

Baldwin has insisted he was informed the gun was “chilly,” or contained no dwell rounds. He has additionally insisted that whereas he pulled again the hammer on the weapon, he by no means pulled the set off.

The movie’s armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, was charged with involuntary manslaughter in reference to the taking pictures and is awaiting trial. She has additionally denied any wrongdoing or information of how dwell ammunition wound up on the set.

When fees have been dropped towards Baldwin in April, some reviews steered that the case towards the actor was weakened by proof exhibiting that the gun he was holding had been modified, making it attainable to misfire with out the set off being pulled. Baldwin has maintained that he by no means pulled the set off on the weapon.

NBC Information reported Tuesday that prosecutors now not imagine the weapon had been modified.

Nikas stated beforehand Baldwin bore no accountability within the taking pictures, saying he was assured the gun contained no dwell ammunition, and he “relied on the professionals with whom he labored, who assured him the gun didn’t have dwell rounds.”

Attorneys for Gutierrez-Reed have additionally denied that she did something incorrect, even suggesting at one level that others on the set tried to “sabotage” the manufacturing by mixing dwell rounds with blanks.

The movie’s assistant director, David Halls, pleaded no contest to a cost of negligent use of a lethal weapon in trade for a suspended sentence and 6 months probation.

Filming on “Rust” was suspended after the taking pictures, however resumed earlier this 12 months, with Hutchins’ husband serving as a producer underneath the phrases of a lawsuit settlement.

Metropolis Information Service contributed to this text.