EntertainmentAlec Baldwin faces trial: Can he escape involuntary manslaughter charge?

Alec Baldwin faces trial: Can he escape involuntary manslaughter charge?

Alec Baldwin faces trial
Alec Baldwin faces trial
Images source: © Press materials
Magdalena Drozdek

9 July 2024 15:03

Three years after the tragedy on the set of the film "Rust," Alec Baldwin's trial begins. The actor may be held accountable for involuntary manslaughter. One person has already received such a verdict.

In New Mexico, Alec Baldwin's trial is starting. Recall that the actor and his lawyers tried to stop the court proceedings, claiming that the prosecution destroyed a crucial piece of evidence in the case - the Colt 45 revolver - and did not allow the defence to examine the weapon in its original condition. One of the experts speaking to "Variety" magazine commented that this was an unbelievable audacity as he believes Baldwin's defenders must have known the weapon would be destroyed and did nothing to preserve it as evidence.

Death on the set of the film "Rust"

The case dates back to October 2021. There was a tragic accident on the set of the film "Rust," being filmed in New Mexico. The world was informed that Alec Baldwin shot the film's cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins. The gun he was using in one of the scenes discharged. It contained live rounds instead of blanks. Hutchins was transported to the hospital and died there.

The police investigation in this case lasted for weeks. In interviews, Baldwin said: "I would never point a gun at anyone and then pull the trigger." He added he "has no idea" how live ammunition got onto the movie set.

Ultimately, both the actor and the weapon expert working on the set at that time, Hannah Gutierrez Reed, were charged with involuntary manslaughter. The woman was sentenced to a maximum of 18 months of imprisonment. Will Baldwin receive the same verdict? The trial begins on 9 July. The day before, the 66-year-old actor appeared in court for a pretrial hearing, at which it was decided that the fact Baldwin was a co-producer of the film "Rust" would not be taken into consideration. American media reported that this is a small triumph for Baldwin.

On the first day, jurors will be selected. The opening statements from the prosecution and Baldwin's defence will most likely be delivered the next day. The prosecution has to prove that Baldwin acted with complete disregard for safety regulations on the set and was indifferent to what would happen to his colleagues, or prove that the actor was irresponsibly handling the weapon. The trial is expected to last until 19 July.

How did the tragedy happen? Those who want to learn the details of the story have a chance thanks to a new Vodylla production. In the documentary "Alec Baldwin. Shock and Grief," the creators recount the events from three years ago, sharing interviews with the actor, witness statements, and police testimonies.

Related content