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Alec Baldwin pleads not guilty over 'Rust' shooting charge

February 1, 2024

Halyna Hutchins was killed in 2021 and director Joel Souza wounded on the set of the Western movie Baldwin was making near Santa Fe in New Mexico.

Alec Baldwin on the set of the movie ''Rust'' in New Mexico
Halyna Hutchins was killed, and director Joel Souza injured, when the firearm Baldwin was holding discharged a live roundImage: Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office/ZUMAPRESS/picture alliance

US actor Alec Baldwin on Wednesday pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter relating to the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the film "Rust" in 2021.

On January 19, Baldwin was indicted on charges of involuntary manslaughter.

Baldwin, a producer and actor on the film, was holding a Colt .45 during rehearsals for the low-budget Western in New Mexico when it discharged a live round, killing Hutchins and wounding director Joel Souza.

Alec Baldwin on the set
Alec Baldwin talks to investigators after fatal shooting on movie setImage: Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office/dpa/picture alliance

Baldwin has repeatedly denied responsibility for the shooting, insisting that he did not pull the trigger of the gun, which should have been loaded with a non-lethal blank in any case.

New charges against Baldwin

Baldwin was originally charged with the shooting in January 2023. Those charges were dropped a few months later based on evidence that the revolver's hammer may have been modified to allow it to fire without the trigger being pulled.

The new charges came after an independent forensic test concluded that Baldwin would have had to pull the trigger of the revolver he was using in a rehearsal for it to fire the live round that struck Hutchins in the chest and killed her.

The Bonanza Creek Ranch movie set where an accident involving actor Alec Baldwin took place, Santa Fe, New Mexico
The Bonanza Creek Ranch movie set where the accident occurred is located in Santa Fe, New Mexico.Image: Roberto E. Rosales/Zumapress/picture alliance

Hannah Gutierrez Reed, the film's armourer, has previously pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter and evidence tampering and is set to go on trial on February 21.

dh/jsi (AFP, Reuters)