“New Elements” against Alec Baldwin for the death on the set of Halyna Hutchins. The actor risks a new indictment


By John

Alec Baldwin is back in the sights of the New Mexico prosecutor’s office: a grand jury will be informed of “new elements” that emerged in the review of the case opened since two years ago the cinematography director of the film Rust, Halyna Hutchins, was killed by a gunshot fired from the weapon the actor was holding.

Prosecutors Kari Morrissey and Jason Lewis said a grand jury will hear the case over the next two months and the outcome could be new calls for criminal charges of involuntary manslaughter.

“New facts have come to light that lead us to believe that Baldwin bears criminal responsibility in the death of Hutchins and the wounding of director Joel Souza,” Morissey and Lewis said. “It is now up to a panel of New Mexico citizens to determine whether Baldwin should be sent to trial.”

The actor was rehearsing a scene on the set of Rust when the shot that wounded Souza and killed Hutchins went off from the gun he was holding and which should not have contained ‘live’ bullets. “It is unfortunate that a terrible tragedy like this has become a misguided investigation,” two of his lawyers reacted on Baldwin’s behalf, saying they were “ready to answer any charge in court.”

The prosecutor’s decision is a sensational development for the actor who only six months ago had a weight lifted from his shoulders when the original indictment for involuntary manslaughter was dismissed. Prosecutors decided to reopen the case after having the gun subjected to further analysis whose results, they say, would contradict Baldwin’s version that he had not pressed his finger on the trigger.

“The tests concluded with certainty that the shot could not be fired without the trigger being pulled,” Morrissey said. Prosecutors plan to present the case to a grand jury on Nov. 16. The film’s gunsmith, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, whose job was to supervise the safety of weapons and ammunition, remains indicted. Also charged with involuntary manslaughter, she has pleaded not guilty.

Signed by Lucien Haag, the report on which the prosecutor’s new decision is based does not directly address whether the gun, a Pietta replica of an 1873 revolver, had been modified. However, he states that it required less than a kilo of pressure on the trigger to fire the shot, much less than a modern pistol but not unusual for a vintage weapon.