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 March 15, 2024

Alec Baldwin requests judge throw out 'Rust' manslaughter case

Actor Alec Baldwin's legal team has made a fervent plea to a New Mexico judge, urging the dismissal of the indictment against him in connection with the tragic shooting incident on the set of the film "Rust."

The attorneys have leveled accusations of unethical behavior against prosecutors and alleged that critical evidence was omitted during the grand jury proceedings.

The filing

In a strongly worded court filing, Baldwin's legal representatives argued that the state's conduct has flagrantly violated ethical standards and flouted established procedural norms.

They contended that the prosecution's actions amounted to an egregious abuse of the legal system, unfairly targeting an innocent individual whose rights have been egregiously disregarded.

The charges against Baldwin stem from the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on October 21, 2021, during the production of "Rust."

Baldwin's charges

Baldwin was indicted on two counts— involuntary manslaughter and negligent use of a firearm, or alternatively, involuntary manslaughter without due caution or circumspection—on January 19, following a previous charge of involuntary manslaughter on January 31, 2023. The latter charges were dropped by special prosecutors Kari Morrissey and Jason Lewis in April after the emergence of new information.

A grand jury was convened, resulting in Baldwin's indictment. Throughout the legal proceedings, Baldwin has steadfastly maintained his innocence, vehemently denying that he pulled the trigger of the prop gun involved in Hutchins' tragic death.

The investigation

In a televised interview with George Stephanopoulos, Baldwin adamantly asserted that he would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger, emphasizing his shock and disbelief at the suggestion.

Despite Baldwin's assertions, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) conducted tests on the firearm involved in the shooting, determining that it could not be discharged without a deliberate pull of the trigger.

Baldwin has also claimed that he was unaware of the live round in the gun, further complicating the circumstances surrounding the incident.

As Baldwin prepares to stand trial on July 9, the legal saga surrounding the "Rust" tragedy continues to unfold. Recently, "Rust" armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in Hutchins' death, though she was acquitted of evidence tampering charges. Gutierrez Reed awaits sentencing, facing the prospect of imprisonment and fines.

Questions persist regarding the accountability and responsibility for the tragic events on the "Rust" set. Baldwin's legal team's impassioned plea for dismissal underscores the complexity and intensity of the legal battle ahead as all parties seek justice and closure in the aftermath of this heartbreaking incident.

Written By:
Dillon Burroughs

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