Adam Baldwin could face criminal charges in killing of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins

Criminal charges could be in store for actor Alec Baldwin after he reportedly shot and killed a cinematographer and injured the director of the movie, Rust, he was filming at the time. 

According to a report in the Independent Journal Review, the district attorney investigating the deadly shooting says that they may charge Baldwin in the cinematographer’s death. 

“We haven’t ruled out anything,” Mary Carmack-Altwies, the district attorney in Santa Fe County, New Mexico, told The New York Times. “Everything at this point, including criminal charges, is on the table.”

The movie, which was filming in Santa Fe County, was a western, involving firearms, one of which was handed to Baldwin who pointed it at the camera for a scene in the film.

Baldwin fired it killing Halyna Hutchins, 42, who was the film’s director of photography. He also injured Director Joe Souza, 48 who was treated at a nearby hospital, according to reports of the accident. 

The actor has claimed from the outset that he was given the firearm and told that it did not have live rounds in it, and included in the investigation is a deep dive into who might have handled the gun before it was given to Baldwin. 

“There were an enormous amount of bullets on this set, and we need to find out what kinds they were,” Carmack-Altwies told the Times, who said that the term “prop gun” is misleading. 

“It was a legit gun,” she said. “It was an antique-era appropriate gun.” 

According to the district attorney, there might not be a quick and clear resolution to the event: 

“It’s probably weeks, if not months, of follow-up investigation that we’re going to need to get to the point of charging,” she said, according to the Times.

Los Angeles trial attorney David Ring said Baldwin is virtually guaranteed of being sued, regardless of the outcome of the criminal investigation:

Baldwin is “absolutely going to get named in any wrongful-death lawsuit. You just have to show that there was negligence that led to the shooting, and it’s a much lower standard than a criminal case,” Ring said.

“Obviously there’s negligence, and it just depends on who was negligent. But ultimately the production company is in charge. It happened on their watch.”

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