Movie Set Gun Handler Was ‘Negligent’ Say Prosecutors.

Photo: Facebook. Hannah Gutierrez-Reid was in charge of weapons on the set of the movie Rust, when a woman camera operator was killed by a stray bullet.
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A movie set weapons handler who loaded a gun for actor Alec Baldwin before it fired and killed a cinematographer was “sloppy”, her trial has heard.

“Negligent acts” by armourer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, 26, led to Halyna Hutchins’ death during the production of the western movie called Rust, prosecutors told the court.

Ms Gutierrez-Reed’s lawyers laid the blame at the feet of Mr Baldwin, who they argued violated basic safety procedures used in making movies.

Mr Baldwin, 65, is also charged over Hutchins’ death on 21 October 2021.

Ms Gutierrez-Reed has pleaded not guilty to charges of involuntary manslaughter and tampering with evidence over the fatality during the production of the Western in the US state of New Mexico.

During opening statements for the trial in Santa Fe on Thursday, prosecutors argued that the defendant’s “unprofessional” on-set conduct led to an avoidable tragedy in which live ammunition found its way into a weapon.

“You will hear testimony that she routinely left guns and ammunition lying around the set unattended and her gun safe and ammo cart were constantly disorganised,” special prosecutor Jason Lewis said.
The jury was shown emotional and distressing footage of the aftermath of the shooting, when a Colt .45 revolver held by Mr Baldwin went off. It included video that appeared to show 42-year-old Ms Hutchins’ final moments.

 

In one of the clips, paramedics can be seen frantically trying to save her life, pleading with her to keep breathing.

To make their case, prosecutors showed jurors boxes of ammunition that were on set the day the shooting took place, which they said contained live rounds interspersed with dummy ones.

They allege that Ms Gutierrez-Reed negligently brought live ammunition from her home to the set that day, including the bullet that struck and killed Ms Hutchins.

Ms Gutierrez-Reed’s defence team, however, denied any wrongdoing and instead argued that it was Mr Baldwin who violated “some of the most basic rules” of operating a firearm.

“The first event that had to happen is the actor Alec Baldwin pointed a gun on that set and he either had his finger on the trigger and the hammer cocked or he pulled the trigger,” attorney Jason Bowles said.

To make their case, prosecutors showed jurors boxes of ammunition that were on set the day the shooting took place, which they said contained live rounds interspersed with dummy ones.

They allege that Ms Gutierrez-Reed negligently brought live ammunition from her home to the set that day, including the bullet that struck and killed Ms Hutchins.

Ms Gutierrez-Reed’s defence team, however, denied any wrongdoing and instead argued that it was Mr Baldwin who violated “some of the most basic rules” of operating a firearm.

“The first event that had to happen is the actor Alec Baldwin pointed a gun on that set and he either had his finger on the trigger and the hammer cocked or he pulled the trigger,” attorney Jason Bowles said.
Sources: BBC, Deadline.

 

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