Newly released police footage shows Alec Baldwin’s reaction, police interview after Rust shooting

SANTA FE, New Mexico — A New Mexico sheriff investigating the fatal shooting on the set of cinematographer actor Alec Baldwin described the complacency, disorganization and lack of security in the making of the low-budget film Rust.

Santa Fe County Sheriff Adan Mendoza said Tuesday he is awaiting forensic examinations of the weapon, projectile, fingerprints and more from the FBI and state medical examiners before referring the 6-month-old case to prosecutors to decide whether criminal charges. be filed.

“There is a certain degree of neglect. Whether it goes to the criminal level is up to the district attorney to decide,” the sheriff told Good Morning America. On Monday, he released virtually all of the investigation files after a live round killed Halina Hutchins and wounded director Joel Souza during a rehearsal on October 21, 2021. The shooting of the western took place on a ranch on the outskirts of the city of Santa Fe.

The vast hoard of recently released law enforcement files includes lapel camera footage of a mortally wounded Hutchins passing out and unconscious as the evacuation helicopter arrives. Interrogations of witnesses, e-mail correspondence, correspondence, an inventory of ammunition and hundreds of photographs complete the collection of evidence.

MORE: New video evidence of deadly shooting on set of ‘Rust’ film released

In one recently released video, a sheriff’s deputy arrives as paramedics attempt to treat Hutchins at the small stave church where she was gunned down while rehearsing for filming.

“Galina, breathe deeply. There you go, smart girl,” says the medic, urging Hutchins to take a breath of air through an oxygen mask.

Outside, a medical evacuation helicopter lands in the desert. A law enforcement officer watches Baldwin, still in his 19th century costume, as the actor smokes cigarettes from other crew members.

The evidence was made public in response to media requests for recordings and to ensure the transparency of the investigation. Mendoza, a Democrat, is running for re-election this year in the June primary.

Recently released documents show that authorities have cleared mobile phone accounts for text messages, images, and audio files created by the cast, crew, and ammunition suppliers for The Rust. The text messages talk about two gun misfires on set prior to the fatal shooting, although neither of them contained live rounds.

SEE ALSO: Alec Baldwin says he’s not responsible for fatal ‘Rust’ shooting in ABC News interview

Other videos show investigators interrogating Baldwin hours after the fatal shooting, talking to him in a small office, and rehearsal footage of Baldwin in a suit practicing a quick weapon maneuver.

Baldwin’s lawyer says newly released files confirm the Rust actor and co-producer was careful with guns on set.

“Mr Baldwin welcomes this investigation,” attorney Luc Nikas said in a statement. “The information that has been released by the authorities demonstrates once again that Mr. Baldwin acted responsibly.”

When questioned by two interrogators, Baldwin says that when the gun fired, he did not know at first that Hutchins would die and was shocked to learn that he was holding a gun loaded with live ammunition. Baldwin said in a December interview with ABC News that he was on set pointing a gun at Hutchins at her direction when he fired without pulling the trigger.

Baldwin told investigators that the gun was supposed to be empty for the rehearsal without filming.

“Nothing was supposed to happen. It had to be a cold gun with no bullets inside or a dummy,” says Baldwin. “I slowly draw my gun. I turn, cock the gun. Bam, he shoots. She (Hutchins) falls to the ground.”

Baldwin repeatedly says that there were no problems with firearms on the set of Rust.

The claims contradict more recent findings by the state health and safety authorities, which last week imposed the highest possible fine of nearly $137,000 on Rust Film Company.

The New Mexico Bureau of Health and Safety provided a scathing account of safety violations in violation of industry standard protocols, including evidence that production managers took limited or no action to address two other misfires.

The bureau also documented gun safety complaints from crew members that went unheeded and stated that gun specialists are not allowed to make decisions about additional safety training. Rust Movie Productions said it would dispute the findings and sanctions.

At least five lawsuits were filed over the shooting, including a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the Hutchins family against Baldwin and the film’s other producers. The lawsuit, on behalf of widower Matt Hutchins and his 9-year-old son, alleges “calling” neglect over complaints about on-set safety.

© 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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