Prosecutors awaiting the investigation report from the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Office will assess evidence during the Oct. 21, 2021, shooting of the Old West movie set outside Santa Fe, New Mexico, to determine whether charges should be pursued. Baldwin and crew members were rehearsing a scene in a rustic church when a prop gun in the actor’s hand discharged, killing cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and injuring director Joel Souza.
Investigations into the tragedy have focused on how a live bullet ended up on a film set.
In his interview with CNN, Baldwin blamed the tragedy on Hannah Gutierrez Reed, who served as gunsmith and props assistant on the film, and assistant director Dave Halls, who gave him the gun. Through their respective attorneys, Gutierrez Reed and Halls accused Baldwin of shifting blame onto others.
“Someone put a live bullet in the gun who should have known better,” Baldwin said. “It was [Gutierrez Reed’s] work. His job was to look at the ammo and put the dummy bullet or the blank bullet, and there weren’t supposed to be any live ammunition on the board.
“There are two people who didn’t do what they were supposed to do,” he added. “I’m not sitting here saying I want them, you know, to go to jail, or I want their life to be hell. I don’t want that, but I want everyone to know that these are the two people who are responsible for what happened.”
According to an administrative complaint filed this month by the New Mexico Department of the Environment’s Office of Occupational Health and Safety against the production company, Gutierrez Reed told Halls to alert him to the Baldwin’s arrival, so she can perform a security check on his firearm. The complaint goes on to say that the armourer left the church ‘expecting Mr. Halls to inform him of Mr. Baldwin’s arrival’. Instead, according to the complaint, Halls gave the revolver directly to Baldwin.
“Why didn’t he [Gutierrez Reed] check this ball? Why didn’t Halls obey him?” Baldwin continued. “Why did he give me the gun? Why didn’t he check? Why did he tell the crew [it was a cold gun]?”
Baldwin also wondered aloud if Seth Kenney, the film’s props supplier, had accidentally supplied live ammunition to the “Rust” set. An FBI report released last week said dozens of cartridges compatible with live ammunition were found on the set.
In January, Gutierrez Reed sued the film’s weapons and ammunition supplier, accusing PDQ Arm and Prop, LLC. and its founder Seth Kenney of violating trade practices, false and misleading product labels, and false and material statements. In the lawsuit, Gutierrez Reed alleges that Kenney sold him a cache of fake ammunition with live ammunition mixed in.
Kenney’s attorneys filed a response last month, denying any allegations and asking the court to dismiss the case.
“We agree with Mr. Baldwin and believe that Seth Kenney, as the primary ammunition supplier, mixed live rounds with blank rounds in the ammunition supplied to Rust,” said Jason Bowles, attorney for Gutierrez. Reed in a statement to CNN. “We again requested that the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office and the FBI test the live bullets for fingerprints and DNA to confirm where the live bullets came from. did not on this vital question, which must be answered to uncover the full truth of what happened.”
CNN has reached out to the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office for comment.
“We disagree with Mr. Baldwin’s attempts to shift blame to others. It’s not up to him to decide or assign blame,” Bowles added.
In a statement, Halls’ attorney said Baldwin was trying to pin the blame on himself.
“Baldwin points fingers at others because the evidence points to him,” Lisa Torraco said. “Halls is not responsible. Everyone needs to stop. People just point the finger at Halls because they don’t want to take responsibility for being wrong. Halls is a scapegoat. People need to examine the evidence.”
Luke Nikas, an attorney for the actor, told CNN on Sunday that the FBI report “was misinterpreted.”
“When Alec Baldwin showed up on that tragic day for filming, he had no reason in the world to think there was a live bullet in that gun, in that church, or even on that property,” Nikas said. to CNN in a later article. interview Thursday. “It would be a huge miscarriage of justice [to charge Baldwin].”
“I don’t want to see anyone suffer”
Over the past 10 months, Baldwin says he has re-enacted the events leading up to the fatal shooting. While waiting for Santa Fe County prosecutors to announce the results of their investigation, Baldwin says he’s taken matters into his own hands.
“I hired a private detective,” he said.
Based on what his private investigator told him, Baldwin said he did not believe he would face criminal charges.
Baldwin said he believed Gutierrez Reed and Halls would also not face criminal charges.
“I’m pretty confident that neither of them should ever work on a film set again,” he said. “I sincerely believe… [investigators are] say it was an accident. It’s tragic.”
Baldwin added that he didn’t want to “condemn” Gutierrez Reed.
“I mean, maybe it’s the Catholic in me,” Baldwin said. “I feel like saying, I don’t want to see anyone suffer. I don’t want to sit here and say you know, go get her and condemn her.”
“That she is dead is the worst thing”
“People are talking about finishing the movie to honor Halyna and I totally agree, that’s great. But more importantly, we wanted to put the money in the kid’s pocket,” Baldwin told CNN, referring to Hutchins’ son.
Baldwin says he’s lost five jobs since filming “Rust” and would have quit acting if it hadn’t been for the support of his wife, Hilaria Baldwin, who is expecting their seventh child this fall.
“I was fired from another job yesterday,” he said. “There I was ready to go to the movies, jump on a plane… I’ve been talking to these guys for months and they told me yesterday that we didn’t want to do the movie with you because of that .”
Baldwin says it’s this kind of stress that “took years off my life.”
“There’s just this torrent of people attacking me who don’t know the facts,” he said, crediting his family’s support for keeping him there.
“If I hadn’t had my wife, I don’t know where I would be right now… If I hadn’t had her, I probably would have quit, retired, disappeared, you know sold everything I owned, I got a house in the middle of nowhere and you just know you found something else to do, selling real estate.”
If and when he returns to film or television, Baldwin says he won’t work with real guns again. Filmmakers these days can use digital effects to create realistic weapons on screen, he says.
Baldwin also says that not a day goes by that he doesn’t think about Hutchins and what happened that day.
“Everyone adored him as a person,” Baldwin said, praising Hutchins’ talent and character.
“That she died is the worst thing. Someone died, and it was preventable. It was so unnecessary,” he said. “Every day of my life I think about this.”
Correction: This story has been corrected to accurately reflect Seth Kenney’s response to the allegations in the Hannah Gutierrez Reed lawsuit.
CNN’s Brandon Griggs, Julia Jones, Josh Campbell and Kevin Flower contributed to this report.