Alec Baldwin Files Two Motions To Throw Out Involuntary Manslaughter Indictment In ‘Rust’ Shooting Case

REUTERS/David 'Dee' Delgado

Leena Nasir Entertainment Reporter
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Alec Baldwin’s legal team filed two motions to dismiss his involuntary manslaughter indictment Monday.

One dismissal motion was for failure to allege a criminal offense and the other was based on the state’s destruction of evidence, according to court documents. Baldwin’s attorneys argued that the prosecution failed to show that the famous actor committed a crime and put the blame on the armorer for not responsibly ensuring the gun didn’t contain live rounds.

Baldwin’s lawyers also noted that the prosecution admitted the “prospect of live ammunition” being onset was “incomprehensible,” the court documents say.


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The legal team working on the famous actor’s behalf also put the spotlight on the firearm that was destroyed during FBI testing. They noted the destruction of the Pietta 45 Colt revolver meant Baldwin wouldn’t be able to have a fair trial and asserted that Baldwin would have never suspected that live rounds would be loaded into the gun, court documents say.

Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the former armorer at the movie Rust, watches her father Thell Reed leave the podium after he asked the judge not to impose prison time on his daughter, during her sentencing hearing at First District Court, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, U.S., April 15, 2024. Eddie Moore/Pool via REUTERS

An undated photo of the reproduction 1873 long Colt .45 Single Action Army revolver actor Alec Baldwin was using on the New Mexico set of western movie “Rust” in 2021, when it fired a live round that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and wounded director Joel Souza, in this handout picture obtained by Reuters on April 17, 2024, from the police investigation into the shooting. Santa Fe County Sheriff?s Office/Handout via REUTERS.

“Simply put, there is no way to undo what the government has done,” Baldwin’s lawyers wrote.

The court documents specifically addressed Baldwin’s team’s inability to test the firearm as part of their defense. “Baldwin’s counsel will never be able to test the firearm in its original state to determine whether pulling the hammer would have resulted in a discharge.”

Santa Fe County Sheriffs Deputy Levi Abeyta (left) intervenes as a firearms expert for the defense, Frank Koucky III, points a replica gun at Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer while demonstrating how to remove the cylinder from a gun like the one used in the Rust shooting during testimony in Hannah Gutierrez-Reed’s involuntary manslaughter trial at the First Judicial District Courthouse in Santa Fe on Tuesday, March 5, 2024. Jim Weber/Pool via REUTERS

“Although Baldwin’s attorneys can make their best effort to persuade a jury that the defects or modifications to the sear and hammer notches — including the virtually nonexistent full-cock notch — preexisted the FBI’s testing, Baldwin has forever lost the chance to probe that fact without doubt, because the government did not even take the basic step of documenting the condition of the firearm’s internal components before destroying it,” the lawyers wrote. (RELATED: ‘Lines Of Cocaine From Here To Saturn’: Alec Baldwin Talks About The Depths Of His Addiction)

A judge sentenced Hannah Gutierrez-Reed to 18 months in prison for her role in the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins during the “Rust” shooting.