Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

As it happenedended1709565039

Rust production wanted to fire ‘difficult to work with’ armourer before Alec Baldwin shooting

“Rust” first assistant director David Halls testified during the trial, and choked up when he recalled the shooting of Halyna Hutchins

Related video: Fatal ‘Rust’ shooting goes to trial

“Rust” prop master Sarah Zachry testified during the trial and admitted to a defence attorney that she had previously voiced a desire to both fire Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and — after the shooting of Halyna Hutchins — see her sent to prison.

After the cross-exam, Ms Zachry told the prosection that the armourer was not easy to work with and confirmed that Gutierrez-Reed had called her a “c***,” which the prosecution argued is likely why Ms Zachry wanted to fire her.

Gutierrez-Reed is facing involuntary manslaughter charges in the fatal shooting of Ms Hutchins. Actor and producer Alec Baldwin is also facing involuntary manslaughter charges related to the shooting. His trial will begin on 9 July.

The prosecution seeks to prove that Gutierrez-Reed was negligent in her duties on set and that proper protocol was in place during the investigation of the shooting. The state claims the armourer was “sloppy” and had left guns unattended on the set.

Gutierrez-Reed is also facing an evidence tampering charge for allegedly asking a friend to hide cocaine for her while police were investigating the shooting.

Gutierrez-Reed faces up to three years in prison if she is convicted.


‘Rust’ dolly grip says Guttierez-Reed was ‘less professional’ than other armourers he’s worked with

Ross Addiego, dolly grip on ‘Rust’ testified that he never recalled receiving a safety bulletin while working on set, and said the production only had one safety meeting he was invited to during filming.

He said in his experience on other productions the crew would receive daily safety bulletins about the filming day’s events and have daily, if not more, safety meetings.

He also said that armourers were typically “uptight” and “anal retentive,” because they “have people’s lives in their hands,” and said they were often former military or law enforcement.

He further said that Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armourer on “Rust,” was “less professional” than he was used to, and said he had seen her pull loose ammunition from a fanny bag and said he saw firearms and gunbelts loose around the set.

Mr Addiego said that it was “unusual” to see those items not locked up and protected.

Mike Bedigan27 February 2024 09:00

ICYMI: Alec Baldwin’s trial set to begin in July

On Monday it was announced that the trial of Alec Baldwin, who is facing manslaughter charges in the shooting death of “Rust” cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, will begin on 9 July with jury selection.

Opening statements by special prosecutors and the actor’s defense attorneys will take place the following day, and proceedings are expected to last eight days.

Baldwin, the lead actor and a co-producer on the film, pleaded not guilty in January, the day before he was scheduled to be arraigned. A grand jury had indicted him after prosecutors received a new analysis of the revolver he was using during filming, renewing a charge that prosecutors originally filed and then dismissed in April 2023.

Alec Baldwin
Alec Baldwin
Mike Bedigan27 February 2024 11:00

Alec Baldwin, an armourer and an assistant director: Who was charged in Rust shooting death of Halyna Hutchins?

Alec Baldwin and two crew members were charged over the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of Rust in January, after an exhaustive 15 month investigation.

Then on Thursday 20 April, weeks before the trial was due to begin, Baldwin’s attorneys announced a charge of involuntary manslaughter had been dismissed.

Rust armourer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed was also facing a charge of involuntary manslaughter, while first assistant director David Halls has agreed to plead guilty to the charge of negligent use of a deadly weapon.


Who was charged in Rust shooting death of Halyna Hutchins?

A grand jury indcited Baldwin on involuntary manslaughter charges in January, months after previous charges were dropped, writes Bevan Hurley

Mike Bedigan27 February 2024 13:00

ICYMI: Prosecutor says ‘incomprehensible’ that live ammunition ended up on ‘Rust’ set, calls Gutierrez-Reed ‘unprofessional’ and ‘sloppy’

During opening arguments, prosecutor Jason Lewis said live ammunition never should have been on the set of “Rust,” and that answering the question as to how the ammo ended up there would be a key element of their case against armourer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed.

Gutierrez-Reed has been charged with two counts of involuntary manslaughter and a count of evidence tampering.

“The prospect of live ammunition ending up on a film set is incomprehensible,” he said. He further claimed that the state’s witnesses would attest to Gutierrez-Reed being “unprofessional and sloppy” on set, and that she “routinely left guns and ammunition around the set unattended.”

Mike Bedigan27 February 2024 14:45

Hannah Guitierrez-Reed trial expected to last months

Judge Mary Marlowe Summer previously said that the involuntary manslaughter trial of “Rust” armourer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed could last for months.

While she was giving instructions before the trial began last Wednesday, the judge said the trial is expected to last through 8 March, and will run every day except for weekends.

Mike Bedigan27 February 2024 15:30

Trial resumes — autopsy doctor called to testify

The Hannah Guttierez-Reed involuntary manslaughter trial has resumed.

Chief Medical Investigator, Dr Heather Jarrell, has been called to testify as an expert witness.

Dr Jarrell performed an autopsy on Halyna Hutchins, who was shot and killed on the set of the film “Rust.”

Graig Graziosi27 February 2024 16:07

Guttierez-Reed struggles to maintain composure while viewing autopsy photos

Hannah Guttierez-Reed has maintained a generally stoic expression for the majority of the trial, but she appeared close to breaking on Tuesday when she was shown autopsy photos of Halyna Hutchins.

The photos were shown during the testimony of University of New Mexico Chief Medical Investigator Dr Heather Jarrell.

Dr Jarrell said that the photos showed Ms Hutchins before her wounds had been cleaned, as is typical practice for medical examiners.

Ms Guttierez-Reed was visibly disturbed by the images, and her eyes frequently darted away from the screen.

Graig Graziosi27 February 2024 16:23

Trial of ‘Rust’ armourer Hannah Gutierez-Reed resumes

Proceedings will shortly begin in the high-profile trial of Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armourer on the set of the film “Rust”, who faces involuntary manslaughter charges in the shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

In opening statements prosecutor Jason Lewis said witnesses would attest to Gutierrez-Reed being “unprofessional and sloppy”, and called it “incomprehensible” that live ammunition was found on the set.

Gutierrez-Reed has been charged with two counts of manslaughter and one count of tampering with evidence. She has pleaded not guilty to all three charges.

On Monday it was announced that actor Alec Baldwin’s manslaughter trial would begin on 9 July.

‘Rust’ armourer Hannah Gutierrez Reed
‘Rust’ armourer Hannah Gutierrez Reed (Santa Fe New Mexican via AP)
Graig Graziosi27 February 2024 16:30

The trial has taken a recess

The trial has taken a recess for a morning break.

It will resume in approximately 15 minutes.

Graig Graziosi27 February 2024 17:06

Forensic firearms analyst says ammo taken from New Mexico prop shop was different from live bullet found on set

Lucien Haag of Forensic Science Services testified to the court today that the bullets he examined — which were collected from the New Mexico prop shop that provided ammunition to the set of “Rust” — were not the same as the live round that was recovered from the set.

The prosecution is trying to undermine the defence’s argument that the prop shop could have accidentally sent a live round to the set.

Graig Graziosi27 February 2024 18:17

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in