Alec Baldwin's lawyer says FBI's Rust report has been 'misconstrued'

Alec Baldwin's lawyer says FBI's Rust report has been 'misconstrued'

August 16, 2022

Alec Baldwin’s lawyer says FBI report on fatal Rust shooting been ‘misconstrued’ and claims the actor did NOT pull the trigger: Insists faulty gun fired on its own

  • Baldwin’s lawyer Luke Nikas said the FBI report had been ‘misconstrued’
  • Nikas said the gun fired on its own in testing, and that when the trigger is pulled it doesn’t work 
  • He insists the only reports that matter are those done by the New Mexican authorities 
  • Baldwin has not been charged with any crime in relation to the accident
  • Prosecutors say they are waiting for cell phone data from the actor 
  • Baldwin has always maintained the gun was faulty and fired on its own  

Alec Baldwin’s lawyer says the FBI report that claims the actor pulled the trigger on the gun he used to accidentally shoot dead Halyna Hutchins, insisting again that the faulty weapon fired on its own. 

The FBI report emerged last week and claims for the first time that Baldwin had to have pulled the trigger in order to fatally wound Hutchins, the 42-year-old cinematographer of his Western movie Rust. 

Baldwin’s attorney Luke Nikas insists that this wasn’t necessarily the case, and that the report had been ‘misconstrued’. 

‘The FBI report is being misconstrued. The gun fired in testing only one time — without having to pull the trigger — when the hammer was pulled back and the gun broke in two different places.’

‘The FBI was unable to fire the gun in any prior test, even when pulling the trigger, because it was in such poor condition,’ he said in a statement to DailyMail.com.

He insisted that the reports that do matter and paint an accurate picture of what happened are those completed by the New Mexican authorities. 

Baldwin, buckled over in grief, after being told Halyna Hutchins had died as a result of the injuries he accidentally caused

The actor, pictured with Hutchins and director Joel Souza, also injured Souza in the same incident with the .45 Colt

‘The critical report is the one from the medical examiner, who concluded that this was a tragic accident.

‘This is the third time the New Mexico authorities have found that Alec Baldwin had no authority or knowledge of the allegedly unsafe conditions on the set, that he was told by the person in charge of safety on the set that the gun was ‘cold,’ and believed the gun was safe. 

The FBI report has not yet been made public. 

ABC News however obtained a copy of it, and cited its key finding that the gun ‘could not be made to fire without a pull of the trigger while the working internal components were intact and functional.’

Prosecutors have not yet decided if any charges will be filed in the case, saying they would review the latest reports and were awaiting cell phone data from Baldwin’s attorneys. 

Baldwin was pointing a gun at cinematographer Hutchins when it went off on Oct. 21, killing Hutchins and wounding the director, Joel Souza. They had been inside a small church during setup for filming a scene.

A new FBI report claims that Baldwin must have pulled the trigger to fire the shot which killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of Rust last year

Video shows investigators telling the actor that Hutchins, 42, had succumbed to her injuries, with Baldwin instantly saying ‘no’ as he lurched back into his seat in shock. Baldwin, 64, is seen raising his hand to his mouth as he looks between the two investigators in stunned silence

Meanwhile, a representative for the movie’s armorer, Hannah Gutierrez Reed said she has been made a ‘scapegoat’ following the shooting. 

Baldwin was adamant that the sheriff’s investigators should question Hannah Gutierrez, pictured, the armorer, about the shooting

The spokesperson also said: ‘The newly released FBI report show the revolver was in good working order and that Baldwin had to have pulled the trigger to fire the revolver, directly contradicting his prior statements and those of Assistant Director Halls, through his attorney, who also said Baldwin didn’t pull the trigger.’  

While it’s too early to say how much weight the medical investigator’s report will carry with the district attorney’s office, Baldwin’s legal team suggested it was further proof that the shooting was ‘a tragic accident’ and that he should not face criminal charges. 

‘This is the third time the New Mexico authorities have found that Alec Baldwin had no authority or knowledge of the allegedly unsafe conditions on the set, that he was told by the person in charge of safety on the set that the gun was ‘cold,’ and believed the gun was safe,’ attorney Luke Nikas said in a statement.

Baldwin said in a December interview with ABC News that he was pointing the gun at Hutchins at her instruction on the set of the Western film ‘Rust’ when it went off after he cocked it. He said he did not pull the trigger.

With the hammer in full cock position, the FBI report stated the gun could not be made to fire without pulling the trigger while the working internal components were intact and functional.

During the testing of the gun by the FBI, authorities said, portions of the gun’s trigger sear and cylinder stop fractured while the hammer was struck. 

Baldwin, who also was a producer on the movie ‘Rust,’ has previously said the gun should not have been loaded for the rehearsal 

That allowed the hammer to fall and the firing pin to detonate the primer.

‘This was the only successful discharge during this testing and it was attributed to the fracture of internal components, not the failure of the firearm or safety mechanisms,’ the report stated.

It was unclear from the FBI report how many times the revolver’s hammer may have been struck during the testing.

Baldwin, who also was a producer on the movie ‘Rust,’ has previously said the gun should not have been loaded for the rehearsal.

Among the ammunition seized from the film location were live rounds found on a cart and in the holster that was in the building where the shooting happened. Blank and dummy cartridges also were found.

New Mexico’s Occupational Health and Safety Bureau in a scathing report issued in April detailed a narrative of safety failures in violation of standard industry protocols, including testimony that production managers took limited or no action to address two misfires on set prior to the fatal shooting.

The bureau also documented gun safety complaints from crew members that went unheeded and said weapons specialists were not allowed to make decisions about additional safety training.

In reaching its conclusion that the shooting was an accident, New Mexico’s medical investigator’s office pointed to ‘the absence of obvious intent to cause harm or death’ and stated that there was said ‘no compelling demonstration’ that the revolver was intentionally loaded with live ammunition on the set.

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