While Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Deputies have remained tight-lipped about their investigation of Alec Baldwin’s killing his director of photography and wounding his director on the set of the movie ‘Rust’ being filmed in New Mexico, the cast and crew have not. In fact, they’ve been sharing all manner of details about what took place on the set preceding the shooting.
Among those details: how the cast and crew used the same gun that Baldwin fired, killing Halyna Hutchins, for target practice off-set while the crew wasn’t working on the film.
From The New York Post:
The prop gun that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on a New Mexico movie set had been used by crew members offsite for fun, a new report claims.
The gun, which was fired by Alec Baldwin on the set of the movie “Rust,” may have even been loaded with live rounds when it was used for what was essentially target practice, TMZ reported.
Multiple sources connected to the production of the film told TMZ that the gun was fired at off-the-clock gatherings – which could explain how a live round found its way into the gun’s chamber.
Another source who was on set told the outlet that when cops arrived they found live ammo and blank rounds stored in the same area, where the fatal mix-up could have occurred.
Having live rounds along with blanks on a movie set seems to be an obvious safety violation, a recipe for disaster. It’s something a careful and experienced armorer would never allow.
About that armorer, the Post is reporting she encountered more problems on another set:
The “inexperienced” armorer in charge of weapons on set of Alec Baldwin’s movie “Rust” had given a gun to an 11-year-old actress without checking properly for safety, a report said.
Hannah Gutierrez Reed, 24, daughter of prominent Hollywood armorer Thell Reed, was head armorer on set in Santa Fe where Baldwin fired a prop gun loaded with a live round, killing cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and wounding director Joel Souza.
Gutierrez-Reed’s alleged misstep happened on the set of the upcoming Nicholas Cage film, “The Old Way” and temporarily halted filming, sources told The Daily Beast.
“She was reloading the gun on the ground, where there were pebbles and stuff,” one source told the outlet. “We didn’t see her check it, we didn’t know if something got in the barrel or not.”
Gutierrez-Reed reportedly handed the gun to child actress Ryan Kiera Armstrong, forcing concerned crew members to intervene, the report said. The gun was then checked for barrel obstruction, according to the sources.
Baldwin, who was also the producer of the ‘Rust’ film, has reportedly cancelled his upcoming projects. That’s probably a smart move since he’s now facing both potential criminal and civil liability as a result of the shooting.