Alec Baldwin has launched a cross-complaint accusing members of the “Rust” crew for negligence in giving him a prop gun that contained live ammunition, resulting in the accidental shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
The New York Times reports that Baldwin filed a lawsuit on Friday, Nov. 11 against several members of the “Rust” crew, including the film’s armorer and first assistant director.
Baldwin’s cross-complaint is in response to a lawsuit filed against him last year by Mamie Mitchell, the film’s script supervisor, who sued Baldwin and others associated with the movie for their alleged roles in Hutchins’ shooting, claiming the incident had caused her “severe emotional stress.”
In Baldwin’s suit, he names: armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who was in charge of the set’s prop guns and ammunition; first assistant director Dave Halls, who allegedly handed the gun to Baldwin after declaring it was safe; Sarah Zachry, who was in charge of the film’s props; and Seth Kenney, described as primary supplier of guns and ammunition to “Rust” set.
“This tragedy happened because live bullets were delivered to the set and loaded into the gun,” said Baldwin’s lawsuit.
Balwdin’s suit also cites evidence released earlier this year by the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office, accusing Kenney of storing weapons and ammunition in “disarray,” along with photos of what is described as ammunition stored “haphazardly.”
In addition, the suit provides a critical assessment of the manner in which Zachry and Gutierrez-Reed organized guns and ammo on the “Rust” set, referencing an FBI report indicating that live bullets had been found in various places on the set, including in a bandoleer that Baldwin was wearing as part of his costume on the day of the shooting.
Baldwin’s lawsuit requests that he be indemnified from legal damages from Mitchell’s suit, and also claims that Baldwin has suffered harm from the shooting by allegedly being fired from multiple acting jobs and passed over for various opportunities.
“There can be no doubt that others have suffered from Cross-Defendants’ negligence far more than Baldwin has,” the lawsuit added.
“Hutchins lost her life, and her young child lost his mother,” the suit continued. “Producer Joel Souza was shot in the shoulder and has suffered physical and emotional pain. Though by no means comparable, Baldwin must live with the immense grief, and the resulting emotional, physical, and financial toll, caused by the fact that Cross-Defendants’ negligent conduct, assurances, and supervision put a loaded weapon in his hand and led him, Hutchins, and everyone else on set to believe that his directed use of the weapon was safe.”