Alec Baldwin ‘Rust’ Trial Live: Opening Statements Begin as Brother Stephen Sits Behind Actor in Court

Video: Alec Baldwin spotted on the set of Rust after

Opening statements will be heard today in the high-profile trial of Alec Baldwin over the fatal shooting on the set of the film Rust.

It’s been nearly three years since a rehearsal for a shooting scene in the Western film ended tragically when a prop gun Baldwin was holding went off, killing cameraman Halyna Hutchins and wounding director Joel Souza.

Baldwin, 66, has maintained that he did not pull the trigger on the gun and did not know it contained a live bullet. He claims the bullet was fired accidentally.

He is charged with one felony count of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the October 2021 incident. If found guilty, he faces up to 18 months in prison.

A jury of 12 people was appointed on Tuesday to decide the fate of the Hollywood actor.

Baldwin arrived at the Santa Fe courthouse flanked by his wife Hilaria — who had brought the couple’s baby — and his brother Stephen.

The high-profile trial comes three months after the film’s gunmaker, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in April and sentenced to the maximum sentence of 18 months in prison.


Defense says: ‘Alec Baldwin committed no crime’

Alex Spiro, one of Baldwin’s attorneys, is speaking now.

He tells jurors that the fatal shooting of Hutchins was an “unspeakable tragedy, but Alec Baldwin committed no crime.”

“You have to step back and remember what they did on a movie set. Movies and magic have always been closely linked… throughout this country, for decades,” he said.

Spiro focused on how a real bullet came to be on the set of Rust, insisting there was no evidence that Baldwin had anything to do with the bullet in the gun.

“He was an actor, acting, playing the part of Harlan Rust,” he said. “An actor, playing a character, can act in ways that are deadly, but on a movie set, they’re not. These cardinal rules, they’re not cardinal rules on a movie set.”

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 4:52 PM


Baldwin pulled the trigger, prosecutor says

Johnson tells the jury that during the trial they will see video footage of Baldwin using the gun on set.

“You see the video footage of the suspect using this firearm on set on multiple occasions, and every time he fired it, it fired just fine,” Johnson said.

“And in fact, you will hear evidence that the defendant himself admitted in December of 2021 that this weapon had no mechanical problems.”

This comes after Baldwin stated that he did not pull the trigger on the day Hutchins was shot.

Johnson also said the firearm had been tested repeatedly by an FBI forensic expert, who determined the weapon was free of defects and in good working order.

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 4:48 PM


Baldwin failed to conduct safety checks

Prosecutors told the jury that Baldwin routinely failed to conduct safety checks with gunsmith Hannah Gutierrez-Reed on the set of “Rust.”

Johnson said Baldwin was filmed during his mandatory gun safety training, “running around and firing his weapon.”

She also said he “didn’t want to offend” Gutierrez-Reed by conducting checks every time he got his hands on a gun.

“You will learn that one of the bullets in that revolver was a real bullet, and the evidence will show that Ms. Gutierrez then gave the weapon to the defendant,” Johnson said.

“And what you will learn is that the suspect has again failed to perform a gun safety check at this gun shop.”

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 4:43 PM


Prosecutor says Baldwin asked for ‘biggest weapon’

Prosecutor Johnson said Baldwin had asked for the “biggest weapon” available for the film.

During her opening statement, she told the jury they would hear evidence that the firearm was sold to the ‘Rust’ set in ‘perfect’ condition.

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 4:31 PM


Attorney Gloria Allred speaks out in court

Gloria Allred, attorney for Halyna Hutchins’ parents and sister, speaks out in court.

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 4:25 PM


The Public Prosecution Service begins with the opening

Special Prosecutor Erlinda Johnson has begun her opening statement.

“When someone pretends, with a real weapon.

And that person ignores the cardinal rule of gun safety… People die.”

Johnson says the budget for “Rust” was tight and the crew was inexperienced.

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 4:22 PM


Stephen Baldwin sits behind his brother Alec Baldwin in court

Stephen Baldwin, the actor brother of Alec Baldwin, sits behind him in court on Wednesday.

Opening statements are expected to be made shortly.

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 3:52 PM


Day 2 of Alec Baldwin’s trial begins now

Court resumed for a second day in the trial of Alec Baldwin in Santa Fe. A jury was selected Tuesday.

Baldwin is in court and will begin his opening statement shortly.

The hearing can be streamed live here:

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 3:49 PM


Prosecutors say they will present evidence that Baldwin ‘went off script’

Prosecutors say they will present evidence that Baldwin went “off script” and failed to follow basic gun safety standards when he pointed the gun at Hutchins on Oct. 21, 2021.

“Ultimately, the prosecution’s main theory is that there was a gun involved, and Baldwin had a gun in his hand, and it doesn’t matter if it’s a movie set or a hunting safety course, you’re responsible for what comes out of the barrel,” said John Day, a Santa Fe attorney and former prosecutor.

Testimony at the trial will examine flaws in a final safety check of the weapon before Baldwin began practicing with it, as well as the mechanics of the weapon and whether it could have gone off without a trigger pull. The live bullet that killed Hutchins also wounded director Joel Souza.

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 3:45 PM


Who is the jury in the Alec Baldwin trial?

Prosecutors and defense attorneys selected 16 jurors — 11 women and five men — on Tuesday, putting together a jury from a region with strong currents of gun ownership and safety informed by wilderness hunting.

Four jurors are considered alternates, while the remaining twelve deliberate once they are assigned the case.

The shooting death of camerawoman Halyna Hutchins, a 42-year-old rising star in her field, sent shockwaves through the film industry nearly three years ago, leading to charges against Baldwin that could land him in prison for up to 18 months.

Baldwin attorney Alex Spiro on Tuesday questioned potential jurors about their strong views on gun safety, asking whether a person should take full responsibility for whether a gun is loaded or whether they can “rely on experts. Does anyone have a problem with that?”

Most of those who responded said they always treat a gun as if it were loaded.

Andrea CavallierJuly 10, 2024 3:29 PM

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