New Information Released About Alec Baldwin's 'Rust' Gun

By Jason Hall

November 3, 2021

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The gun fired by Alec Baldwin during an accidental shooting that killed director of photography, Halyna Hutchins, 42, and injured director, Joel Souza, 48, on-set last month was reportedly left unattended for two hours prior to accident taking place, according to the New York Times.

Jason Bowles, an attorney representing Rust armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, told the Times the gun was left on a tray for about two hours after Gutierrez-Reed loaded it with six dummy rounds, who took the ammunition from a box labeled "dummies," which are rounds that contain no gunpowder and are used to resemble bullets during filming.

Gutierrez-Reed's other attorney, Robert Gorence, said the armorer loaded three firearms set to be used later during the filming session, including the .45 Long Colt used by Baldwin, and left the guns encased in socks to prevent anyone who happened to pass by from handling them before going on a lunch break and leaving the weapons unattended.

“Was there a duty to safeguard them 24/7?” Mr. Gorence said via the Times. “The answer is no, because there were no live rounds.”

On Wednesday (November 3), Bowles and Gorence discussed the shooting during an appearance on the TODAY Show, which included Bowles suggesting there might have been an attempted sabotage in relation to the accident.

"How did a live round get on set, and who put that live round on the set?" Bowles said when asked about a live round in a box of dummy ammunition. "There was a box of dummy rounds labeled 'dummy.' "We don’t know whether the live round came from that box. We’re assuming somebody put the live round in that box."

Bowles didn't provide evidence to back his theory, but said he believed it was possible that someone would "want to sabotage the set, want to prove a point, want to say they're disgruntled, they're unhappy" by putting a live round or live rounds in the box of blanks without anyone else's knowledge.

Lane Luper, the A-camera first assistant, resigned one day prior to the fatal accident claiming safety prcedures were "fast and loose" on the set of Rust, which Luper said had two accidental weapons discharges, according to NBC News.

Sources told NBC News other crew members also walked off the set over safety concerns during filming.

Last week, Gutierrez-Reed said said she had "no idea" where live ammunition came from prior to an accidental fatal shooting on-set and her attorneys said she was "devastated and completely beside herself over the events that have transpired" in a statement obtained by NBC News.

"Safety is Hannah's number one priority on set. Ultimately this set would never have been compromised if live ammo were not introduced. Hannah has no idea where the live rounds came from," the statement from Bowles and fellow attorney Robert Gorence -- who also appeared on the TODAY Show -- stated.

Court documents obtained by NBC News state that assistant director David Halls yelled "cold gun" to indicate the weapon didn't have live rounds as was intended as it was given to Baldwin prior to the accidental shooting.

Halls told authorities he should have checked the gun more thoroughly after noticing a difference in ammunition rounds, admitting that he didn't check each individual round of ammunition before handing it back to Guitierrez-Reed.

The rookie armorer's attorneys said the guns were locked up at night and Gutierrez-Reed attempted to get more training while on the set of the film.

"Hannah was hired on two positions on this film, which made it extremely difficult to focus on her job as an armorer," the statement says. "She fought for training, days to maintain weapons and proper time to prepare for gunfire but ultimately was overruled by production and her department. The whole production set became unsafe due to various factors, including lack of safety meetings."

Last week, a crew member told TheWrap.com that Gutierrez-Reed's "dangerous" gun handling upset actor Nicolas Cage on the set of the western film The Old Way, two months prior to the accidental Rust shooting.

Brumbaugh said the 24-year-old failed to follow basic gun safety protocols, discharged a weapon multiple times on-set without warning, which caused Cage to scream at her and storm off set.

"Make an announcement, you just blew my f*****g eardrums out," Cage said, according to Brumbaugh.

Gutierrez-Reed also reportedly walked onto the set of The Old Way with live rounds of blanks without announcing it to her colleagues, as well as tucking weapons under her armpits, which would then be pointed up at others when she turned her back to them, according to Brumbaugh.

Brumbaugh told Gutierrez-Reed that she should be fired for her actions and the 24-year-old responded by revealing The Old Way was her first film.

An unidentified source, however, contested Brumbaugh's account of Gutierrez-Reed's negligence on the set of The Old Way.

"I have no such recollection of this event on our set. I asked my partners the same," the producer said. "The details on some of these accounts specifically when it pertains to 'The Old Way' have been blown out of proportion."

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