Judge Rejects Baldwin’s Request to Dismiss Manslaughter Charge in ‘Rust’ Case

(LibertySons.org) – In October 2021, Hollywood film actor Alec Baldwin was practicing a scene on the set of the western movie “Rust” when the gun he was holding fired a live round, killing cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and injuring Director Joel Souza. He now faces involuntary manslaughter charges in New Mexico. Baldwin has tried several times to have the charges dismissed — to no avail.

On June 28, the court denied the actor’s latest effort to have the case dismissed. The defense argued that the FBI damaged important evidence during forensic testing, including the gun Baldwin was holding at the time.

The attorneys stated the weapon was damaged before tests could be completed for modifications or other issues that could relieve the actor of responsibility. However, Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer rejected the motion to dismiss, siding with the prosecution. The decision puts the case on track to start on July 9.

The defense claimed the FBI was trying to replicate an accidental discharge by hitting the weapon from different angles. That testing broke the gun. The judge said the destruction “is not highly prejudicial,” and the defense failed to prove the FBI intended to destroy the weapon.

Marlowe Sommer indicated Baldwin could still get a fair trial. Prosecutors stated that while the gun was broken, the parts were still available for the defense to use. However, the defense called the decision to continue with the case “outrageous,” given the state of the weapon. The judge ruled in her order that the prosecution had to disclose the gun’s destruction at the hands of the FBI during the trial to the jury, which had all the information.

In March, “Rust” armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. She was sentenced to 18 months in prison. Baldwin faces the same punishment if found guilty of Hutchins’s death during his upcoming trial.

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