Ten months after the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the movie “Rust,” Alec Baldwin is still trying to make himself the victim.
In an interview with CNN reported Saturday, Baldwin repeated the claim he did not pull the trigger of the gun he was pointing at Hutchins while rehearsing a scene in New Mexico on Oct. 21, 2021. He said he just pulled the hammer back.
This month, an FBI forensic report obtained by USA Today concluded the gun Baldwin was pointing at Hutchins could not have been fired “without a pull of the trigger.” Since Baldwin was the one holding the gun, he would have been the only one who could have pulled that trigger.
Despite mountains of evidence to the contrary, Baldwin continued to insist in his CNN interview that he held no responsibility for Hutchins’ death.
He even went a step further and said because he was innocent, former President Donald Trump and others who questioned his innocence are guilty.
“The former president of the United States said, ‘He probably shot her on purpose,’” Baldwin told CNN. “To me, that was really the only time I thought that I needed — that I was worried about what was going to happen.
“Because here was Trump, who instructed people to commit acts of violence, and he was pointing the finger at me and saying I was responsible for the death.”
First of all, that’s not exactly what the former president said.
In a Nov. 4, 2021, interview on “The Chris Stigall Show” podcast, Trump was asked about the shooting and said of Baldwin, “He’s a volatile guy.”
Is Baldwin responsible for Hutchins’ death?
Yes: 98% (1469 Votes)
No: 2% (23 Votes)
“As bad as it may have been kept, meaning, you know, the people that take care of the equipment and the guns and everything else — but even if it was loaded, and that’s a weird thing — maybe he loaded it,” Trump said.
“He’s a cuckoo-bird. He’s a nutjob. And usually, when there’s somebody like that, you know, in my opinion, he had something to do with it,” he said.
“But if nothing else, how do you take a gun and just, whether it’s loaded or not loaded, how do you take a gun, point it at somebody that’s not even in the movie and just point it at this person and pull the trigger and now she’s dead?” the former president said.
Second, the actor’s suggestion that Trump “instructed people to commit acts of violence” is dubious at best. Baldwin was apparently referring to the incursion at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
On that day, Trump said to his supporters during a rally in D.C., “I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.” Nothing about that sounds like an encouragement to commit violence.
Third, Baldwin was implying Trump supporters would try to harm or even kill him because the former president said he was guilty. This is a disgusting assumption about Trump supporters, and the actor presented it without evidence.
While many of those who support the former president believe Baldwin holds some responsibility for Hutchins’ death, I have yet to hear one of them express a desire to kill the actor as a result. Instead, they simply want justice to be served to Baldwin for his actions in court, in accordance with the law.
Finally, whether Baldwin meant to kill Hutchins, the fact is that he was pointing the gun at her, and the FBI concluded the gun could not have fired without a trigger pull.
While it remains to be seen whether Baldwin will face charges, it is clear he holds some responsibility for Hutchins’ death. Instead of admitting it, he has proclaimed he is not to blame while pointing the finger at others.
During the interview with CNN, Baldwin said “Rust” armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed and assistant director Dave Halls, who handed him the gun, were the only two people who should be held responsible.
“Someone put a live bullet in the gun who should have known better,” Baldwin said, according to CNN. “That was [Gutierrez Reed’s] job. Her job was to look at the ammunition and put in the dummy round or the blank round, and there wasn’t supposed to be any live rounds on the set.
“There are two people who didn’t do what they were supposed to do. I’m not sitting there saying I want them to, you know, go to prison, or I want their lives to be hell. I don’t want that, but I want everybody to know that those are the two people that are responsible for what happened.”
“Why didn’t [Gutierrez Reed] check that bullet?” the actor said. “Why didn’t Halls obey her? Why did he give me the gun? Why didn’t he check? Why did he tell the crew [it was a cold gun]?”
There is something ironic about Baldwin accusing Trump of inciting violence against him by suggesting he’s culpable only to turn around and place the blame directly on two other people. By Baldwin’s own logic, is he not inciting violence against both Gutierrez Reed and Halls?
Jason Bowles, a lawyer for Gutierrez Reed, condemned Baldwin’s attempt to blame his client.
“We disagree with Mr. Baldwin’s attempts to deflect blame onto others,” Bowles said, according to CNN. “It is not for him to decide or to apportion blame.”
Lisa Torraco, a lawyer for Halls, spoke in even stronger terms against the actor.
“Baldwin is pointing the finger at others because the evidence is pointing at him,” Torraco said. “Halls is not responsible. Everyone needs to stop. People are only pointing the finger at Halls because they don’t want the responsibility of being wrong.
“Halls is a scapegoat. People need to look at the evidence.”
The Santa Fe Sheriff’s Office investigation into the shooting is still ongoing, CNN reported. Once the findings are released, prosecutors will decide whether to pursue charges against Baldwin or anyone else involved in the tragedy.