Prop master who gave gun to Alec Baldwin was replacement for original staffer
Hours before Alec Baldwin accidentally shot Halyna Hutchins, a crew of workers had left the movie’s set to protest against poor safety protocols
The gun responsible for the tragic death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was under a staff member, who was recently hired as a replacement of the original prop master amid on-set chaos. The newly-employed worker reportedly gave the firearm to Alec Baldwin, who then accidentally shot the 42-year-old Hutchins.
Following her death, Santa Fe County Sheriff's spokesperson Juan Rios said in a statement, “This investigation remains open and active. No charges have been filed in regard to this incident. Witnesses continue to be interviewed by detectives.”
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Baldwin, who is also the producer of ‘Rust’, expressed his sadness as he stated: “There are no words to convey my shock and sadness regarding the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother and deeply admired colleague of ours. I'm fully cooperating with the police investigation to address how this tragedy occurred and I am in touch with her husband, offering my support to him and his family. My heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna.”
A source told The New York Post that hours before Baldwin accidentally shot Hutchins on October 20, a number of workers had left the movie’s set to protest against poor safety conditions. The staff members who walked off the set said that the gun that was fired by Baldwin had a live round in it that not just took the life of the director of photography, but also injured director Joel Souza.
Also, a report by the Los Angeles Times quoted a knowledgeable crew member, who said that it was not the first time the prop gun misfired. They said it misfired thrice in earlier weeks, before adding, “there was a serious lack of safety meetings on this set.”
Following the fatal shooting, TMZ reported that a woman, who identified herself as the movie’s script supervisor, called 911 and was heard accusing someone of the tragedy. But the person’s name has apparently been redacted. “OK, this f- -king [bleep] that yelled at me at lunch asking about revisions, this motherf- -ker. Did you see him lean over my desk and yell at me? He’s supposed to check the guns. He’s responsible for what happened,” the woman said in the call.
Besides, a source told the LA Times that Hutchins was also protesting for a safer work environment on the movie set. A post from her Instagram account on Tuesday, October 18, showed her standing in solidarity with her union members. The caption read, “RepostBy @francesfisher: "Standing in #IAsolidarity with our @IATSE crew here in New Mexico on RUST. @alecbaldwininsta @jensenackles @bradynoon @swentemmel @travisfimmel #TravisHammer @devonwerkharder @rhyscoiro The Boys & Moi! @#SAGaftra in #solidarity with #IATSE Read @ia_stories 💔.”
Meanwhile, Los Angeles lawyer Louis Shapiro said that the October 20 tragedy would result in a wrongful-death suit and may also lead to a criminal case. Shapiro told The New York Post: “The question is: Who is the one who is exercising negligence here? Where is the duty of care to make sure that that gun is properly loaded and properly used? That duty doesn’t lie with the actor. The actor was just handed something. The duty of care lies with the prop person.”