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Rust armorer’s lawyer says she is being FRAMED, Alec Baldwin set shooting was sabotage

Rust armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed is being framed for the accidental shooting that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, her lawyer claimed, blaming sabotage and insisting the ‘scene was tampered with before police arrived’ after Alec Baldwin fired the fatal shot.  

Jayson Bowles, Gutierrez-Reed’s attorney, urged federal investigators Wednesday to continue digging for ‘all of the facts’ after the Santa Fe County district attorney said there was ‘no proof’ of a conspiracy to sabotage the film. 

‘We eagerly await the FBI’s investigation as well and we are asking for a full and complete investigation of all of the facts, including the live rounds themselves, how they ended up in the ‘dummies’ box, and who put them in there,’ Bowles said.

‘We are convinced that this was sabotage and Hannah is being framed. We believe that the scene was tampered with as well before the police arrived.’

Much has been reported about Gutierrez-Reed, who was reportedly the source of complaints at her previous job, the upcoming Nicolas Cage-helmed film The Old Way

Alec Baldwin (pictured right), seen walking with wife Hilaria in New York Wednesday

Alec Baldwin (pictured right), seen walking with wife Hilaria in New York Wednesday

District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies refuted the claims made by Reed’s legal team, which suggested the weapon could have been intentionally loaded with live ammo.

‘Defense attorneys have come up with conspiracy theories and used the word ‘sabotage.’ We do not have proof,’ said Atlwies, as she weighs whether to charge Gutierrez-Reed. 

Bowles also said Wednesday he has offered to share ‘additional, critical information’ with the sheriff’s office and is waiting for a response. 

Gutierrez-Reed supplied the gun fired by Baldwin. It was also checked by the assistant director David Halls, who told Baldwin, 63, it was a ‘cold gun,’ meaning it had blanks, when he pointed it at Hutchins, 42, and fired while rehearsing a scene. 

Carmack-Altwies told Good Morning America that she knows who loaded the gun and that investigators found additional live rounds on set, but could not specify how many because the investigation was ongoing. 

‘We still don’t know how they got on the set and how they got there I think will be one of the most important factors going into a charging decision,’ Atlwies said.  

‘It’s probably more important to focus on what led up to the shooting because the moment of the shooting, we know that at least Mr. Baldwin had no idea that the gun was loaded, so it’s more how did that gun get loaded, what levels of failure happened and were those levels of failure criminal?’  

Mary Carmack-Altwies, the District Attorney in charge of the investigation, said there were 'so many levels of failures' on the set before Hutchins' death

Mary Carmack-Altwies, the District Attorney in charge of the investigation, said there were ‘so many levels of failures’ on the set before Hutchins’ death

Hutchins, a mother of one, was 42 when she was killed on October 21

Actor Alec Baldwin, 63, accidentally shot and killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins when a gun he was holding went off during filming for the Western film Rust in New Mexico last month

Alec Baldwin was spotted dining in New York with wife Hilaria on Sunday evening - weeks after the couple escaped to Vermont with their six children

Alec Baldwin was spotted dining in New York with wife Hilaria on Sunday evening – weeks after the couple escaped to Vermont with their six children 

Authorities have been scouring the set of the film as they investigate how a live round came to be in the firearm

Authorities have been scouring the set of the film as they investigate how a live round came to be in the firearm

Following the shooting, which also left Rust director Joel Souza injured, Santa Fe county sheriff said there had been ‘some complacency’ in how weapons were handled.   

The set has been shut down since the October 21 incident. Baldwin, the film’s producer, has said it is unlikely the low-budget movie will ever be completed.  

Baldwin has returned to New York City, where the actor was spotted going to a salon with his wife, Hilaria, on November 9.  

Hilaria, wearing open-toed sandals, took off her jacket on the unseasonably warm fall day

Hilaria, wearing open-toed sandals, took off her jacket on the unseasonably warm fall day

Baldwin was wearing a mask for much of the outing but had it slipped down to his chin as couple waited to cross streets

Baldwin was wearing a mask for much of the outing but had it slipped down to his chin as couple waited to cross streets

Much has been reported about Gutierrez-Reed, who was reportedly the source of complaints at her previous job, the upcoming Nicolas Cage-helmed film The Old Way

Much has been reported about Gutierrez-Reed, who was reportedly the source of complaints at her previous job, the upcoming Nicolas Cage-helmed film The Old Way

Crew members of the ill-fated movie Rust said the set had an ‘armorer mentor’ who supplied the gun but was not seen during filming. 

Gutierrez-Reed was recommended for the job by Seth Kenney, a 51-year-old prop expert who’s been in the movie business for at least a decade, crew members told the Los Angeles Times.

A crew sheet leaked to the newspaper lists Kenney as an ‘armorer mentor,’ a title that film crew veterans say is rarely used.

Six people familiar with the filming say Kenney, who owned the PDQ Media Arm & Prop rental company in Lake Havasu City, Arizona, supplied the guns used on set, including the FD Pietta Colt .45 that killed Hutchins.

Kenney was added to the Rust crew in late September, the Los Angeles Times reports, though multiple crew members say they never saw him on set. 

In the weeks since the shooting, several former crew members have spoken out about the unsafe environment on the set.

Lane Luper, who served as the film’s A-camera first assistant, said he quit one day before the fatal shooting because employees were being overworked, COVID-safety was not being enforced properly and gun safety was poor.

‘I think with Rust, it was the perfect storm of the armorer, the assistant director, the culture that was on set, the rushing. It was everything,’ he told Good Morning America about the events that led up to the fatal shooting.

‘It wasn’t just one individual. Everything had to fall into place for this one-in-a-trillion thing to happen.’

He then disputed the producers’ claim that safety was a top priority on set, saying, ‘I only personally remember two safety meetings that involved the entire crew.’

The gun Baldwin used to shoot Hutchins supplied by the armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed (pictured)

The gun Baldwin used to shoot Hutchins supplied by the armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed (pictured)

The set of the film has been shut down since the fatal shooting

The set of the film has been shut down since the fatal shooting

Luper ultimately accused the film’s production of breaking the cardinal rule of having guns on set, which he said was, ‘There shall never be live rounds anywhere on a studio lot, or stage or set.’ 

He also choked up when describing the late Halyna Hutchins, saying ‘She genuinely was something special.’

In his letter of resignation, Luper said there had been two accidental weapon discharges on set and one accidental sound-effects explosion that went off around the crew. 

‘There have been NO explanations as to what to expect for these shots. When anyone from production is asked we are usually met with the same answers about not having enough time to complete the day if we rehearse or that “this is a 21 day shoot,”‘ Luper wrote in the letter.

He added that the crew grew exhausted of long commutes from the set to their lodging, which for some more than two hours away.

‘In my 10 years as a camera assistant I’ve never worked on a show that cares so little for the safety of its crew,’ Luper said.

'What the f**k just happened?' Baldwin reportedly asked cast and crew members after the shot went off, and Hutchins suddenly stumbled back into head electrician Serge Svetnoy's arms

‘What the f**k just happened?’ Baldwin reportedly asked cast and crew members after the shot went off, and Hutchins suddenly stumbled back into head electrician Serge Svetnoy’s arms

Sources tell the Los Angeles Times that they never saw Kenney at the New Mexico movie set

Sources tell the Los Angeles Times that they never saw Kenney at the New Mexico movie set

Luper also told Sky News he decided to speak out because he wanted to make clear that, in his opinion, Hutchins’s death was caused by cutting costs and cutting corners.

‘Halyna’s death was so preventable by simply following industry safety rules that had been in place for literally decades,’ he said, adding: ‘I have never felt more unsafe on set or off set.

‘I’ve never felt I was more in danger of dying on the set or on the drive home, I was so exhausted.’

He said the production team put potential profit above the safety and welfare of the crew, noting: ‘The crew themselves worked very hard, but I don’t think they were necessarily respected by the producers.

‘This set was unsafe simply because they didn’t have the wherewithal to follow safety rules that we have in this industry.’

Luper added that there ‘were no rehearsals, there were no safety meetings to explain what the next shot was, which is also a requirement every time you use firearms.’

In a statement to Sky News, a spokesperson for the producers hit back at his claims, saying: ‘Mr. Luper’s allegations around budget and safety are patently false, which is not surprising considering his job was to be a camera operator, and he had absolutely nothing to do with it or knowledge of safety protocols or budgets.

‘As we continue to cooperate with all investigations, we are limited in what we can say,’ the spokesperson continued. ‘However, safety is always the number one priority.

Baldwin has pushed back at critics who claimed the working conditions on the set were unsafe

Baldwin has pushed back at critics who claimed the working conditions on the set were unsafe

Last week, Baldwin fired back at the claims that the working conditions on the set were unsafe, though, sharing a social media post from one crew member slamming her coworkers for painting a ‘blatantly false’ picture of the set as ‘chaotic and unsafe’.

Baldwin shared a screenshot of the post written by costume designer Terese Magpale Davis to his Instagram account with the caption: ‘Read this.’

‘I am so sick of this narrative,’ Davis wrote in her post. ‘I worked on this movie. The story being spun of us being overworked and surrounded by unsafe, chaotic conditions is bull***t.’

Davis’ post refuted many of the complaints of crew members – including that they routinely worked more than 12-hour days.

‘We never worked more than a 12.5 hour shoot day. That was once,’ Davis wrote.

‘Most days were under 12. The day Halyna died we had come off of a 12 hour turnaround after an 11 hour shoot day. We had (including camera) gotten off by 6:30pm.’

Davis continued, sharing that the fatal shooting that occurred on set will haunt her for a long time. She notes that she is angry at Dave Hall, the assistant director who handed Baldwin the gun, but would not accuse him of not caring about safety.

‘I am heartbroken and furious,’ she wrote. ‘I will never get the sound of that gunshot or my director’s screams out of my head as a result.’

‘My friend is dead. Am I angry at him? Yes. But I won’t jump on the bandwagon and pretend that he was uncaring about our safety the whole way through.’

Baldwin had remained silent about the incident on Rust prior to sharing the post. 

Then on Wednesday, the head electrician on the Rust set who held dying Halyna Hutchins in his arms sued Baldwin, rookie armorer Gutierrez-Reed and assistant director Halls over ‘severe emotional distress’ after the fatal shooting and revealed that the scene did not call for Baldwin to fire the gun. 

Serge Svetnoy filed the suit against the three crew members – as well as others, who remain unnamed – and claimed that their alleged negligence led to the shooting and put him in emotional turmoil.

Svetnoy alleged in the court documents that the bullet struck director Joel Souza, 48, and killed Hutchins, 42, nearly hit him, too, according to TMZ. 

He also said that he was one of the first people to tend to Halyna while she was bleeding out and attempted to keep her conscious. 

He told TMZ that he’s suing Baldwin because he ‘owed a duty to the Plaintiff and other crew members and actors on the “Rust” set to handle the Colt Revolver provided to him by Defendant Halls with reasonable care and diligence for the safety of “Rust” cast and crew’.

Head electrician on the Rust movie set Serge Svetnoy (left), who held dying Hutchins (right) in his arms has sued Baldwin, rookie armorer Gutierrez-Reed and assistant director Halls over 'severe emotional distress' after the fatal shooting

Head electrician on the Rust movie set Serge Svetnoy (left), who held dying Hutchins (right) in his arms has sued Baldwin, rookie armorer Gutierrez-Reed and assistant director Halls over ‘severe emotional distress’ after the fatal shooting

‘This duty called for Defendant Baldwin to double-check the Colt Revolver with Halls upon being handled to ensure that it did not contain live ammonization,’ he added in the court documents.

Svetnoy went on to claim that if Baldwin knew the gun was loaded with a real bullet, he had another duty to ‘refrain from pointing it at anyone’.

In a bombshell line, the lawsuit also revealed that the scene Baldwin was doing did not call for him to pull the trigger. The script supposedly directed the actor to draw the gun and point it in the general direction of the camera.

However, ‘the scene did not call for Defendant Baldwin to shoot the Colt Revolver,’ the document stated.

Besides his alleged negligence as an actor Svetnoy also pointed to the 63-year-old’s negligence as a producer of the movie. 

He wrote: ‘They attempted to save money by hiring an insufficient number of crew members to safely handle the props and firearms.’

According to TMZ the suit went on to claim that there were other failings on set, including violating ‘industry norms, declining requests for weapons training days, failing to allow proper time to allow for gunfire, failing to send out safety bulletins and spreading the staff too thin’.

Svetnoy, who asked for damages and a jury trial, also called the target practice that took place before the fatal accident ‘outrageous’.

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Read more at DailyMail.co.uk