Hannah Gutierrez: weapons master from the “Rust” set found guilty

Hannah Gutierrez: weapons master from the “Rust” set found guilty

The jury deliberated for two hours in the trial of the weapons master from the “Rust” set, Hannah Gutierrez. The public prosecutor’s office had previously criticized “constant, never-ending security deficiencies” in their work, which ultimately ended in death.

After Hollywood star Alec Baldwin fatally shot a camerawoman while filming the western “Rust,” the gunsmith on the film set was found guilty of negligent homicide. After more than two hours of deliberations, the jury in the US state of New Mexico reached its verdict against Hannah Gutierrez-Reed on Wednesday (local time). She now faces a prison sentence of up to 18 months. The exact sentence is expected to be determined next month.

“Rust” death: Weapons master Hannah Gutierrez is guilty

“This is not a case in which Hannah Gutierrez made a mistake that involved accidentally putting a live cartridge in the gun,” prosecutor Kari Morrissey told jurors in her closing argument. Rather, it’s about “constant, never-ending security deficiencies” that have led to the death of one person and almost the death of another.

While filming the low-budget production “Rust” in New Mexico in October 2021, camerawoman Halyna Hutchins was fatally hit by a live bullet from a .45 Colt that actor Baldwin was holding in his hand for a scene in a wooden church. Director Joel Souza was injured by the same bullet. It was unclear how the live ammunition could even get into the revolver.

According to prosecutor Morrissey, the gun master had sloppy supervision of the more than 20 guns on set and was not present when Baldwin and the crew prepared the scene in the church. “Contrary to all standards for gun carriers on movie sets, she left the gun in the church,” Morrissey said.

Sloppy work

According to an investigator at the crime scene, there were real cartridges among film ammunition on a cart with props, and holsters used by the actors also contained live ammunition. “Every time an actor had a gun in his hand, it was like playing Russian Roulette,” said prosecutor Morrissey.

Gutierrez-Reed, 26, accepted her guilty verdict without moving. According to the judge’s order, she must now remain in custody until her sentencing next month.

The parents of slain camerawoman Hutchins welcomed the guilty verdict. “We are pleased that the justice system continues to ensure that everyone else responsible for Halyna’s death must face the legal consequences for their actions,” they said through their lawyer.

Hollywood star Baldwin has repeatedly denied responsibility for the incident and emphasized that he did not pull the trigger. He will also have to stand trial for negligent homicide starting in July. The case shocked Hollywood and sparked a debate about safety when filming with weapons – including, but not only, low-budget productions.

Filming on “Rust” was initially interrupted due to the incident, but was completed last year at a location in the US state of Montana. It is not yet clear when the film will be released in cinemas.

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Source: Stern

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