Alec Baldwin broke down in tears – but failed to apologize for fatal shooting

Alec Baldwin broke down in tears – but failed to apologize for fatal shooting

‘If I thought I was responsible I would’ve killed myself’: How Alec Baldwin broke down in tears during infamous interview, failed to apologize for killing Rust cinematographer and claimed he would NOT be charged

Alec Baldwin broke down in tears in his first interview months after fatally shooting Rust cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

In the now infamous interview with ABC News host George Stephanopoulos, the embattled actor denied that he pulled the trigger of a live gun on October 21, 2021, going as far as to say he ‘would have killed himself’ if he thought he was responsible.

Baldwin, 64, instead shifted the blame to prop managers, claiming they did not check if the gun was loaded before handing it to him.

The actor also shared how he ‘loved’ Hutchins and had bonded with her widower after accidentally killing her — and claimed cops at the scene told him he would not be charged in the shooting.

But today, New Mexico authorities announced that he will be charged with involuntary manslaughter in Hutchins’ death.

Alec Baldwin teared up in a now infamous interview with George Stephanopoulos last year

Halyna Hutchins, 42, was killed in a shooting on the set of Rust in October 2021

Halyna Hutchins, 42, was killed in a shooting on the set of Rust in October 2021

New Mexico First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies and special prosecutor Andrew Reeb said Thursday they would file involuntary manslaughter charges against Baldwin for the fatal shooting. If convicted, he could face a maximum of 18 months in prison.

Armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, 25, will also face involuntary manslaughter charges. 

Baldwin has  previously claimed that he did not pull the trigger on Hutchins, saying that the gun just ‘went off’ while in his hands on the set of his western.

‘I let go of the hammer, bang. The gun goes off. Everyone is horrified. They’re shocked. It’s loud,’ he said in the interview in December 2021. 

He also revealed that he didn’t know Hutchins had died until hours later, at the end of his police interview, when he was photographed in the sheriff’s parking lot in Santa Fe.

But, he said at the time, he had been told by people ‘in the know’ that it was ‘highly unlikely’ he’d face criminal charges. 

‘Someone is responsible for what happened, and I can’t say who it is, but it’s not me.

‘Honest to God, if I thought I was responsible I might have killed myself. And I don’t say that lightly.’  

Baldwin claimed he did not know Halyna died until the end of a police interview, when he was photographed on the phone speaking to his wife, Hilaria

Baldwin claimed he did not know Halyna died until the end of a police interview, when he was photographed on the phone speaking to his wife, Hilaria 

Hutchins' October 19, 2021 Instagram post showed cast members and staffers, including Baldwin alongside Hutchins herself and armorer Gutierrez-Reed (circled left to right) on the set of Rust in Santa Fe, New Mexico

Hutchins’ October 19, 2021 Instagram post showed cast members and staffers, including Baldwin alongside Hutchins herself and armorer Gutierrez-Reed (circled left to right) on the set of Rust in Santa Fe, New Mexico

In his version of events, the 30 Rock star said he was filming a scene inside a church on the set when the gun was handed to him.

‘She’s getting me to position the gun – everything is at her direction,’ he said of Hutchins.

‘I draw the gun, to her marker. I’m not shooting to the camera lens, I’m shooting just off. In her direction. This was a completely incidental shot that may not have ended up in the film.’

Baldwin’s version of on-set tragedy 

‘I’m just showing. I go, ‘How ’bout that? Does that work? You see that? Do you see that?’ 

‘And then she goes, ‘Yeah, that’s good.’ 

‘I let go of the hammer, bang. The gun goes off. Everyone is horrified. They’re shocked. It’s loud. They don’t have their earplugs in. 

‘No one was – the gun was supposed to be empty. I was told I was handed an empty gun. 

‘If they were cosmetic rounds, nothing with a charge at all, a flash round, nothing. 

‘She goes down, I thought to myself, ‘Did she faint?’ 

‘The notion that there was a live round in that gun did not dawn on me ’till probably 45 minutes to an hour later.’

He added: ‘Well, she’s laying there and I go, ‘Did she hit by wadding? Was there a blank?’  

‘I never pulled the trigger. No, no, no. You would never do that. 

‘The gun was supposed to be empty. I was told I was handed an empty gun.  

‘Nobody gave a f*** who you are any more until this. You see a lot of people with their phones now, in a coffee shop,’ he said, showing them filming him. 

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He said he cocked the gun, and was discussing with Hutchins how it looked on camera. 

‘I’m just showing. I go, ‘How ’bout that? Does that work? You see that? Do you see that?’  And then she goes, “Yeah, that’s good.”

‘I let go of the hammer, bang. The gun goes off. Everyone is horrified. They’re shocked. It’s loud. They don’t have their earplugs in.’

He went on to say that ‘the gun was supposed to be empty,’ claiming he was ‘told I was handed an empty gun.’

But Hutchins soon fell to the ground, at which point Baldwin said he thought she must have fainted. 

‘The notion that there was a live round in that gun did not dawn on me ’till probably 45 minutes to an hour later.’

He added: ‘Well, she’s laying there and I go, “Did she get hit by wadding? Was there a blank?” Sometimes those blank rounds have a wadding inside that packs, it’s like a cloth that packs the gunpowder in. Sometimes wadding comes out, it can hit people, and it could feel like a little bit of a poke. 

‘But no one could understand. Did she have a heart attack? Because remember the idea that someone put a live bullet in the gun was not even in reality.” 

‘I never pulled the trigger. No, no, no. You would never do that.’

Baldwin went on to claim that ‘no one had any idea’ there was live ammunition used until a police officer showed a photo of the shrapnel removed from director Joel Souza’s arm.

He said then began ‘the agony, insanity, that someone put a live bullet in the gun. She was laying there and she was there for a while. I was amazed at how long they didn’t get her in a car or get her out, but they waited until a helicopter came,’ he said.

‘When she finally left, I don’t know how long she was there for. She kept saying, she’s stable, just as you disbelieve there was a live round in the gun, you disbelieve its going to be a fatal accident.

‘At the end of my interview with the sheriff’s department, they told me, “We regret to inform you she didn’t make it.” They told me then and there.’ 

He added: ‘That’s when I went outside and called my wife.’ 

Baldwin and Hutchins on the set of Rust. He  has said he never pulled the trigger

Baldwin and Hutchins on the set of Rust. He  has said he never pulled the trigger

In this image from video released by the Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office, Alec Baldwin stands in costume and speaks with investigators following the fatal shooting

In this image from video released by the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office, Alec Baldwin stands in costume and speaks with investigators following the fatal shooting 

Baldwin has said he thought the gun was empty when he was handed the weapon on  the set

Baldwin has said he thought the gun was empty when he was handed the weapon on  the set

Baldwin further insisted that he is not to blame for the shooting, saying the fault lay with someone else — though he would not name that person at the time. 

The Oscar-nominated actor said that he had been handed the antique gun and told it was safe, and he trusted the people who told him that.

‘The gun was supposed to be empty,’ Baldwin added. ‘I was told I was handed an empty gun.’ 

He said he trusted others on set to do their job.

Among those were Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer, and Dave Halls, the assistant director. 

‘One person has that responsibility to maintain the gun,’ Baldwin said.    

‘Halyna and I had something profound in common: we both presumed the gun was empty,’ he said. 

Baldwin added: ‘There is only one question to be answered, only one. And that is: where did the live round come from?’

The actor would later file a suit against four people involved in the film, saying they were negligent in providing him with the gun.

Among those named in the civil suit are the film’s armorer and props assistant, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed; assistant director David Halls; props master Sarah Zachry; and Seth Kenney, who supplied guns and ammunition to the film set.

In his suit, Baldwin accuses Gutierrez-Reed of failing to verify that a Colt revolver he was using in rehearsal was safe. She will now also be charged with involuntary manslaughter for her role in Hutchins’ death.

The suit also states that Halls failed to check the weapon before he declared it safe and handed it to Baldwin, and that Zachry failed to ensure that weapons used on the New Mexico set were safe.

All those named in the suit have denied any culpability.

Baldwin would later shift blame on the set's armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed. She has denied any responsibility

Baldwin would later shift blame on the set’s armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed. She has denied any responsibility

In the interview, Baldwin claimed that he was blown away by Hutchins' work and had bonded with her husband, Matthew, in the aftermath of the fatal shooting

In the interview, Baldwin claimed that he was blown away by Hutchins’ work and had bonded with her husband, Matthew, in the aftermath of the fatal shooting

Baldwin also used the interview with Stephanopoulos to recount how he first met Hutchins and what he thought of her work.

He said he was first introduced to the Ukrainian cinematographer by Souza, and when he saw her work, he thought ‘she was fantastic.

‘Her work was beautiful,’ Baldwin told Stephanopoulos. ‘She was someone who was loved by everyone who worked with her, and liked by everyone who worked with her, and was admired.’ 

Baldwin then broke down into tears, saying he rarely makes films anymore because they would entail long periods of time away from his wife Hilaria and their six children.

But, he said he agreed to produce Rust because he loved the script and was excited about the New Mexico filming.

‘This movie made me love making movies again,’ he said. ‘I really thought we were onto something.’  

After the fatal shooting, Baldwin said, he met Hutchins’s husband, Matthew.

‘He hugged me and said, “I guess we’re going to go through this together.”’ Baldwin claimed.

The actor went on to say he  accompanied Matthew to Halyna’s memorial, and they had spoken since, but Baldwin believed his lawyers were advising the grieving husband to be more cautious.

He added that he would be ‘stunned’ if Matthew Hutchins did not seek some form of civil redress.

And speaking of Halyna’s son, he said: ‘This boy doesn’t have a mother any more. And there is nothing we can do to bring her back.’  

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Melissa Koenig

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