Alec Baldwin’s Request to Dismiss ‘Rust’ Manslaughter Indictment Denied by New Mexico Judge

A New Mexico judge on Friday denied Alec Baldwin’s motion to dismiss the manslaughter charge made against him in connection to the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of “Rust” in 2021.

Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer rejected defense arguments that special prosecutor Kari Morrissey had failed to inform the grand jury that it was not the actor’s duty to inspect the gun he was holding.

Special prosecutors have said that Baldwin made “shameless” attempts to escape responsibility for Hutchins’ death and accused the producer/actor’s legal team of “countless lies and manipulation.”

“The defendant’s motion to dismiss is predictably false, misleading and histrionic misrepresentation of the facts and circumstances of the history of the case,” the prosecution’s filing said in April, adding that the prosecution has “experienced near countless lies and manipulation from the defense for more than one year.”

The filing further stated, “We have, and certainly will continue to be, the subject of the defendant’s contrived and unwarranted personal attacks.”

Baldwin’s lawyers, meanwhile, said in their request that Morrissey relied too heavily on testimony from the state’s expert witness Bryan Carpenter, who said that Baldwin was responsible for handling of the firearms.

They also accused prosecutors of disclosing information about the grand jury proceedings to the press against the judge’s orders and providing inaccurate jury instruction on the involuntary manslaughter charge, allegations which they have denied.

Baldwin was charged with one count of involuntary manslaughter for allegedly pointing a gun at Hutchins during rehearsal of a scene on the western. The gun, which — unbeknownst to Baldwin — contained live ammunition, fired and fatally struck Hutchins and wounded director Joel Souza. Baldwin insists he never fired the gun himself.

The “30 Rock” actor previously pleaded not guilty to an initial involuntary manslaughter charge in February 2023 before the charge was dropped that April.

Jury selection for Baldwin’s trial will begin July 9, a date set in February. Opening statements are planned for the following day. The trial is expected to last eight days, according to a scheduling order released at the time.

In a separate trial, movie armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in the fatal shooting and sentenced in March to 18 months in prison. She was found not guilty on the charge of obstructing justice.

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