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Alec Baldwin's 'Pass' shot: Where investigation stalls a year later

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It’s been a year since cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was fatally shot on the set of “Rust” in New Mexico.

Halyna died when a gun fired while Alec Baldwin was holding a stage practice on the New Mexico movie set on October 21, 2021. The band was rehearsing in a small church on the Bonanza Creek Farm set.

Baldwin claimed that the gun did not pull the trigger—once during an interview shortly after the shooting, and again in a recent podcast episode. The actor initially said that he pulled back the hammer of the gun as far as he could and released it.


Alec Baldwin shot cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on set and injured director Joel Souza.

Alec Baldwin shot cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of “Rust” and injured director Joel Souza.

Here’s a look at where the investigation stands a year later:

investigation continues

The civil case has been concluded, but the criminal investigation into the “Rust” attack continues. The Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department focused on how live ammo reaches the set.

The department took the time to interview all relevant witnesses, including Baldwin, the armored Hannah Gutierrez Reed, and more. Additionally, the sheriff’s department has enlisted several third parties to assist.

The weapon used in the attack was sent to the FBI for testing. The bureau released the FBI forensic report, which determined that the weapon used in the fatal shot “cannot be fired without pulling the trigger.”

Alec Baldwin makes a gun with his fingers while talking to investigators following the investigation.

Alec Baldwin makes a gun with his fingers while talking to investigators after filming “Rust.”
(Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office)

Testing showed that when the .45 Colt caliber F.lli Pietta single-action pistol hammer is in the quarter and half cock positions, the gun will not fire without pulling the trigger. With the hammer in the fully cocked position, the gun “could not be fired without pulling the trigger while the working internal components were intact and functional.”

The sheriff’s office also received the report from New Mexico’s Office of Medical Investigators (OMI). Report Ruled that “Pass” had an accident.

“The critical report is the report from the coroner who concluded that this was a tragic accident,” Baldwin attorney Luke Nikas told Fox News Digital. “This is the third time that New Mexico officials are ascertaining that Alec Baldwin had no authority or knowledge of the alleged unsafe conditions on set, told him by the person in charge of security on set that the gun was ‘cold’ and believed the gun was safe.”

Once Alec Baldwin’s cell phone records takenIf the official OMI and forensic reports are reviewed, the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s investigation file is sent to the district attorney for review and eventual impeachment decisions.

The Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department is currently reviewing the case file one last time, according to the office’s spokesperson, Juan Rios.

“The Rust investigation file is under final review by the sheriff’s office before it’s submitted to the Santa Fe district attorney,” Rios told Fox News Digital. “We don’t have a specific date for when this will happen. Beyond this information, our agency has no further comment.”


Who can face charges?

Alec Baldwin may still face criminal charges

As District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altweis continues to investigate the fatal incident, Alec Baldwin may still face criminal charges in the “Rust” shooting.
(Getty Pictures)

New Mexico’s First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies specifically named Baldwin in her request for emergency funding to prosecute the case. The prosecutor also claimed that he expects to sue up to four people on set at Bonanza Creek Ranch.

“‘Pass’ prosecutions could potentially consist of one (1) to four (4) defendants,” Carmack-Altwies wrote in the paperwork filed for the emergency grant. “One of the possible suspects is the well-known film actor Alec Baldwin.”

However, a decision on who is to blame cannot be made until the prosecutor receives the sheriff’s department’s final investigative report.

“The District Attorney is still awaiting the final report from the Santa Fe County Sheriff,” Heather, a spokesperson for the Santa Fe District Attorney’s Office, told Brewer Fox News Digital.

“Once the District Attorney receives the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s full report, he and his team of professional lawyers and investigators can begin to carefully review all the materials provided. As with any other case he handles, the District Attorney’s focus is on maintaining the integrity of the process and ensuring that this investigation is the most important. ensure it is done to a high standard.”


Legal case concluded

Halyna Hutchins' family filed a wrongful death lawsuit shortly after the shooting on the set.

Halyna Hutchins’ family filed a wrongful death lawsuit shortly after the shooting on the set.
( Panish Shea Boyle Ravipudi LLP)

Halyna Hutchins is survived by her husband, Matthew Hutchins, and their nine-year-old son.

Halyna Hutchins is survived by her husband, Matthew Hutchins, and their nine-year-old son.
(Hutchins’ attorney Brian Panish)

On February 15, a wrongful death lawsuit was filed against Alec Baldwin and other key members of the production.

Baldwin’s case and others who, according to the family’s attorney, were “responsible for the safety of the set” and called for “reckless behavior and cost cutting” that led to Hutchins’ death.

Matthew Hutchins’ attorneys interviewed witnesses before filing and produced a video gathering evidence for his wrongful death lawsuit. In a video shared at a press conference, Matthew’s lawyers reiterated crew members’ claims that the “Rust” set was unsafe. The lawsuit alleged that Baldwin, who was also a producer on the film, and the other “Rust” crew and cast made “major security breaches” on set.

The family initially sued for punitive damages and funeral and burial costs, among other things to be determined in court.

However, on October 5, Halyna’s husband announced that his civil case was resolved pending court approval.

Matthew Hutchins, “We have reached a settlement, subject to court approval, for our wrongful death lawsuit against the producers of ‘Rust’, including Alec Baldwin and Rust Movie Productions, LLC. As part of this agreement, our lawsuit will be dismissed.” In a statement to Fox News Digital, through Brian Panish of his attorney Panish, he said: Shea | Boyle | Ravipudi LLP.

“The filming of ‘Rust,’ which I will now produce, will resume in January 2023, with all the original cast. I’m grateful that the producers and the entertainment community came together to pay tribute to Halyna’s latest work.”

In addition, Baldwin made a statement on the solution of the case from his social media account.

“Today we are pleased to announce the conclusion of the civil lawsuit filed on behalf of the family of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins,” Baldwin said in a screenshot of an article. “Throughout this difficult period, everyone has maintained their desire to do what is best for Halyna’s son. We are grateful to all who contributed to resolving this tragic and painful situation.”


Rust’s filming to resume


According to Matthew Hutchins, “Rust” will continue filming, but not at Bonanza Creek Ranch in New Mexico.
(Backgrid for Sven Doornlkaat/Fox News Digital)

As Matthew announced, “Rust” will continue filming in January 2023 and he has announced that he will be executive producer.

The western is now exploring locations, but has confirmed that the cast and crew will not be returning to New Mexico, where Halyna’s death took place.

“The production of ‘Rust’ is not going back to New Mexico,” Melina Spadone, attorney for Rust Movie Productions LLC, told Fox News Digital on Wednesday. “The production is considering other locations, including California, but no decision has been made.”

Although it has not been confirmed whether Baldwin will rejoin the production, Matthew’s initial announcement claimed that the production would continue with “the original main cast.”


Janelle Ash of Fox News Digital contributed to this report.