Alec Baldwin Claims He’s Not At Fault For ‘Rust’ Movie Shooting

Sitting down with ABC News, the actor says he does not feel guilt, but is ‘struggling physically’.


ABC News

Alec Baldwin Interview

Mei Dotzler, Editor

Over a month after the deadly tragedy on the ‘Rust’ movie set, Alec Baldwin sat down with ABC News for the first time, asserting that he had nothing to do with the fatal incident.

On October 21st, the actor was on a western set for the upcoming film ‘Rust’ near Santa Fe, New Mexico, practicing drawing a revolver that supposedly contained no live rounds. Unaware that it was loaded, the gun suddenly fired, killing Rust’s cinematographer, Halyna Hutchins, and wounding its director, Joel Souza.

Standing over her body in pure shock for over 60 seconds, Baldwin contested that he did not cock the hammer of the gun, but he pulled it so far back that that action could have set it off. “I let go of the hammer — bang, the gun goes off.” The real questions investigators are asking are how a live round got into the prop gun, how everyone failed to notice, and how the gun ended up firing.

In the highly-commented interview with ABC News, the actor started off by taking an absolute position of saying he did not pull the trigger. “I would never point a gun at anyone and pull a trigger at them,” he told ABC. Gun experts chimed in on the situation, coming to the general consensus that it’s possible a single-action revolver could discharge without pulling the trigger since the hammer was pulled so far back, but it’s unclear if that would actually create enough pressure to force fire a live bullet. Movie industry armorer that did not work on ‘Rust’, Clay Van Sickle, weighed in saying guns usually don’t go off until someone pulls the trigger. “Unless that gun was in a horrible state of disrepair, there is no other way that gun could have gone off.”

“Both Ms. Hutchins and I assumed the gun was safe to handle. I was handed the gun and told it was safe, and Ms. Hutchins herself told me where to position it,” Baldwin defended.

With the police investigating the shooting, especially how a real bullet ended up on set and into the prop gun, Baldwin could potentially face criminal charges. On top of this, the actor is also facing two separate lawsuits from two crew members who were in the room when it happened, naming Baldwin alongside the other film’s producers as the defendant. They claim that Baldwin should have checked if the gun was safe to handle himself, to which he responded that one of the suing plaintiffs touched his shoulder and told him he did not hold any responsibility for the accident.

Legal professionals chimed in believing the interview was a mistake. Because Baldwin took such a strong stance in being innocent, his remarks could be used against him in civil lawsuits or criminal trials since the investigation is still ongoing. Los Angeles injury attorney Miguel Custodio told Insider that Baldwin’s legal team probably constructed a lot of Baldwin’s comments to paint the idea of “victim of rare occurrence,” consciously trying to shift the blame onto the gun supplier or manufacturer. On the other hand, Los Angeles criminal defense attorney Lara Yeretsian said the interview actually helped Baldwin, coming across as very “genuine, honest, and natural”.

Baldwin made a point of saying, “I would never point a gun at anyone and pull a trigger at them — never.”

“Someone is responsible for what happened, and I can’t say who that is, but I know it’s not me. I mean, honest to God, if I felt that I was responsible, I might have killed myself if I thought I was responsible. I don’t say that lightly.”