Alec Baldwin could face five years in prison over Rust shooting
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Alec Baldwin could face a five year prison sentence if he is convicted of involuntary manslaughter over the accidental shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
Hutchins was killed after a prop gun held by Baldwin was discharged on the New Mexico set of Rust in October 2021.
Rust director Joel Souza was also wounded in the shooting on the Bonanza Creek Ranch set near Santa Fe, Arizona, but no charges have been filed regarding this incident.
Baldwin and Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the set's armorer in charge of weapons, were charged with involuntary manslaughter by Santa Fe's District Attorney's Office yesterday (31 January).
District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies announced the decision to charge both Baldwin and set armorer Hanna Gutierrez-Reed over the death earlier this month, saying in a statement: "After a thorough review of the evidence and the laws of the state of New Mexico, I have determined that there is sufficient evidence to file criminal charges against Alec Baldwin and other members of the Rust film crew.
"On my watch, no one is above the law, and everyone deserves justice."
Many reasons were brought forward by the DA for the charges against Baldwin and Guiterrez-Reed, including the limited firearm training that Baldwin had undergone.
The pair are being 'charged in the alternative' with two different manslaughter charges of differing severity which require different standards of wrongdoing to be proven.
If the case does go to trial, they can only be convicted on one of the two charges.
For the first charge - involuntary manslaughter - prosecutors must prove that Hutchins' tragic death was as a result of underlying negligence, and it could see Baldwin jailed for up to 18 months and hit with a $5,000 fine.
The second charge, involuntary manslaughter in the commission of a lawful act, requires proof there was more than simple negligence involved and the defendants showed a reckless disregard for safety.
That charge includes a firearm enhancement, which would mean a mandatory penalty of five years would be applied.
Last year, lawyers for Hutchins' family released a CGI reconstruction detailing how they allege she was killed.
Following this, Hutchins' family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Baldwin, the film's armorer, and other producers.
Baldwin and Hutchins' family reached an undisclosed settlement in October last year.
It was announced that shooting on Rust would resume with Halyna's widower Matthew as executive producer and Souza returning to direct.
Topics: News, Alec Baldwin, US News, Film and TV