Alec Baldwin Looking For ‘Speedy’ ‘Rust’ Trial To ‘Minimize Public Vilification’

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Actor Alec Baldwin is facing criminal charges for involuntary manslaughter in connection with the death of "Rust" cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, who was shot and killed on October 21, 2021, while rehearsing a scene for the Western film.

A gun that the "30 Rock" actor was holding went off, striking and killing Hutchins. Director Joel Souza, who was standing behind her, was hospitalized as a result of the incident. In January 2023, Alec Baldwin and "Rust" armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed were charged with two counts of involuntary manslaughter in connection with Hutchins' death.

Gutierrez-Reed was later charged with tampering with evidence after prosecutors claimed that a witness came forward stating that she had transferred cocaine to another individual on the day Hutchins was killed, thus impeding the investigation by law enforcement officials. Her trial was originally scheduled for December 2023 but has since been rescheduled to February 2024.

Alec Baldwin's Legal Team Asserts His Right To A Speedy Trial

Alec Baldwin sits down with police for interview following Rust shooting
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On Wednesday, attorneys Luke Nikas and Alex Spiro of Quinn Emanuel filed a legal motion asserting Alec Baldwin’s right to a speedy trial, as guaranteed by the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution. The court documents state that the “30 Rock” actor is “entitled to a fair and speedy disposition of the charges to minimize public vilification and suspicion and to avoid the hazards of proving his innocence that often arise after lengthy delays in prosecution.”

They are also asking that the District Attorney “preserve all evidence related to” the “Rust” trial and produce a considerable number of legal documents after he is arraigned or waives arraignment, including statements, books, photographs, papers, documents, physical or mental examinations, scientific tests or experiments, polygraph tests, and a list of witnesses.

The legal filing goes on to state that “Mr. Baldwin reserves the right to call any and all witnesses disclosed by the prosecution of a witness list for trial or hearing in this matter.” Although Baldwin has not been named as a witness in Hannah Gutierrez-Reed’s trial, it remains to be seen if his legal team will potentially call her as a witness. Her trial is scheduled to begin next month.

Alec Baldwin Is Again Facing Criminal Charges

Alec Baldwin Charges
The Blast

Alec Baldwin could face up to 18 months in prison if convicted of involuntary manslaughter. The filing, dated January 19, 2024, was put forward by special prosecutors Kari T. Morrissey and Jason J. Lewis months after they initially dismissed charges against the "Supercell" actor last April. At the time, they released a statement saying:

“Over the last few days and in preparation for the May 3, 2023, preliminary hearing, new facts were revealed that demand further investigation and forensic analysis in the case against Alexander ‘Alec’ Rae Baldwin, III. Consequently, we cannot proceed under the current time constraints and on the facts and evidence turned over by law enforcement in its existing form. We therefore will be dismissing the involuntary manslaughter charges against Mr. Baldwin to conduct further investigation. This decision does not absolve Mr. Baldwin of criminal culpability and charges may be refiled. Our follow-up investigation will remain active and on-going.”

However, according to the new filing, they concluded that Baldwin “did cause the death of Halyna Hutchins by an act committed with the total disregard or indifference for the safety of others, and the act was such that an ordinary person would anticipate that death might occur under the circumstances.”

In a brief statement, Baldwin’s lawyers, Luke Nikas and Alex Spiro, said, “We look forward to our day in court.”

Halyna Hutchins' Family Breaks Silence On Manslaughter Charges

Alec Baldwin sued by family of shot cinematographer Halyna Hutchins
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Attorney Gloria Allred is representing Halyna Hutchins' mother, father, and sister in a civil suit against Alec Baldwin and other "Rust" producers. She is also representing "Rust" script supervisor Mamie Mitchell in a separate lawsuit. In a brief statement, Allred, who is representing the family, said:

"Our clients have always sought the truth about what happened on the day that Halyna Hutchins was tragically shot and killed on October 21, 2021. They continue to seek the truth in our civil lawsuit for them and they also would like there to be accountability in the criminal justice system. The grand jury has decided that there is sufficient evidence to indict Alec Baldwin on the charge of involuntary manslaughter.  We are looking forward to the criminal trial which will determine if he should be convicted for the untimely death of Halyna, who was the daughter of our clients Olga Solovey and Anatolii Androsovych, the sister of Svetlana Zemko, and the co-worker-of-our-client-, Mamie Mitchell."

Attorneys for Baldwin did not respond to her statement.

Alec Baldwin Insists That He Never Pulled The Trigger

Alec Baldwin at the Comedy Central Roast Of Alec Baldwin
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In December 2021, the "Boss Baby" actor insisted that he had never pulled the trigger on the gun on the "Rust" set and claimed that he had "no idea" how a bullet ended up in the gun that he was holding for the scene.

“The trigger wasn’t pulled. I didn’t pull the trigger. I would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger at them. Never,” Baldwin told George Stephanopoulos in a December 2021 interview. “I have no idea [how a bullet got in there]. Someone put a live bullet in a gun. A bullet that wasn’t even supposed to be on the property.”

In August 2023, court documents obtained by The Blast showed that Kari Morrissey and Jason Lewis were considering refining charges against Baldwin based on an independent investigation that showed that the trigger had to have been pulled in order for the gun to fire.

“The fired evidence cartridge is the consequence of a normal hammer fall from the fully cocked position of the hammer,” the court report filed by the Forensic Science Services of Arizona stated at the time. The investigation was linked to the case against Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who pleaded not guilty in August 2023.