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Alec Baldwin formally indicted for on-set shooting: ‘Manslaughter’

Alec Baldwin formally indicted for on-set shooting: 'Manslaughter'

In a statement on the probable cause of the accident that resulted in the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, the actor is described as "distracted" during training on how to use the prop gun. He will go to court along with gunsmith Gutierrez Reed.

Dark clouds over Alec Baldwin. As anticipated two weeks ago by the Santa Fe County District Attorney's Office, the U.S. actor has been formally indicted for "manslaughter" following the death of Halyna Hutchins, the cinematographer accidentally killed in October 2021 by a bullet fired from a prop gun while filming the western movie Rust.

Also emerging from the U.S. media is the written statement on the probable cause of the accident: per Special Investigator Robert Shilling of the district attorney's office, Alec Baldwin was allegedly "distracted" during training on how to use the gun. According to the document, he was apparently talking to members of his family on his cell phone, a reconstruction that will soon be examined.

Baldwin will then go to court to defend himself against the same charge as gunman Hannah Gutierrez Reed, who has also now been formally indicted. In essence, Shilling claims that had Baldwin performed the mandatory safety checks with Gutierrez Reed – and not pointed the gun at Hutchins ("first rule of gun safety")"the tragedy would not have occurred."

It would therefore be a "reckless deviation from known standards, practice and protocol that directly caused the fatal shooting." Meanwhile, assistant director Dave Halls, named in reports as the person who handed Baldwin the weapon and announced that it was a blank gun, has signed a plea deal to charges of "negligent use of a deadly weapon."

"If any one of these three people (Baldwin, Gutierrez Reed and Halls, ed.) had done their job," stressed Special Prosecutor Andrea Reeb, "Halyna Hutchins would be alive today." 

Written by Michael Zippo

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