In a surprise turn, criminal charges against Alec Baldwin for the fatal on-set shooting in October 2021 have been dropped.
Authorities charged the actor with two counts of involuntary manslaughter for the incident during the filming of Rust in New Mexico.
Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed by a live bullet Baldwin fired from a prop gun.
New Facts Revealed in the Case Against Alec Baldwin
The decision to drop the charges comes less than two weeks before the trial.
According to BBC, New Mexico special prosecutors Jason Lewis and Kari Morrissey revealed they had received new information in the case that necessitated further investigation.
However, the prosecutors were clear that their decision does not absolve Baldwin of criminal culpability, and they may refile charges in the future.
The actor’s lawyer, Luke Nikas, praised the decision to drop the charges.
“We are pleased with the decision to dismiss the case against Alec Baldwin, and we encourage a proper investigation into the facts and circumstances of this tragic accident.”
Baldwin was practicing firing the gun at a ranch when it accidentally went off, wounding director Joel Souza and fatally striking Hutchins.
Baldwin denied pulling the trigger.
However, an FBI report concluded that gun could not have been fired without Alec Baldwin pulling the trigger.
Rust Movie Productions announced they had rewritten the scene Baldwin rehearsed when he shot Hutchins.
They have also added new rules to ban working weapons and ammunition from the set.
While the authorities have dropped the charges against Baldwin, the case is not over.
Prosecutors will keep investigating and may refile charges.
For now, let’s hope the film production takes all necessary precautions to ensure the safety of its cast and crew.
it was an accident and thats that. Nothing else to it. Glad they were dropped.
— Mo Abdalla ? (@inthemo_ment) April 20, 2023