Alec Baldwin Just Got Some Potentially Good News In Rust Manslaughter Case

Alec Baldwin as Moses Randolph in Motherless Brooklyn
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

The tragedy on the set of the movie Rust that led to the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins has continued to unfold a year and a half after the incident. Actor/producer Alec Baldwin, who was holding the gun that went off and shot Hutchins has been charged with involuntary manslaughter for the incident. But his case may have just received a boost as the special prosecutor in the case has stepped down. 

Andrea Reeb had been named special prosecutor in the case against Baldwin. His legal team had objected to her appointment, claiming that as a State Legislator in New Mexico, the state constitution did not allow her to also be a special prosecutor. The court had not yet made a ruling on that argument, however, in a statement to TMZ Reeb said that she wanted to ensure justice was done here by making sure attention was on the case at hand, and not on her.

While the involuntary manslaughter charge is certainly a cloud hanging over Baldwin as he attempts to complete work on Rust, the movie where the accident initially happened, this is the second piece of good news for his legal team in recent days. Last month a special “firearm enhancement” that would have increased the sentence for Baldwin significantly in the case of a guilty verdict, was thrown out by the court.

Both Baldwin and Rust armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed have been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of Halyna Hutchins. Gutierrez-Reed is accused of having not properly inspected the weapon, allowing live rounds onto the movie set. Baldwin is accused of not following proper safety procedures in his handling of said weapon.

According to reports, Baldwin was holding the gun, which he was told was safe to handle, when the weapon discharged. Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and director Joel Souza were both injured, but Hutchins died. Baldwin has continued to insist that he never actually fired the gun in question. However, several other crew members of Rust have sued the production, and Baldwin specifically as a producer, claiming otherwise.

With Reeb having stepped down First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies will have a decision to make, either moving forward with the case herself or appointing another special prosecutor. Either way, the case against Baldwin will almost certainly be slowed down as the D.A. makes the decision of how best to move forward and the new prosecutor gets up to speed.

With the celebrity of the defendant at play and the high-profile nature of the incident, there will be a lot of eyes on this case when the trial starts. However, without a prosecutor in place, it’s unclear when that will happen, and quite a lot could happen in the interim.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis.  Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.