Rust Film Shooting Case: Armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed Gets 18 Months in Prison for On-Set Shooting by Alec Baldwin

Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, the armorer for the movie Rust, has been sentenced to 18 months in prison following the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins by Alec Baldwin on set.

Published on Apr 16, 2024  |  11:00 AM IST |  48.3K
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Hannah Gutierrez-Reed (Getty Images)

Trigger Warning: This article contains gruesome details of death and violence, which could be triggering for some readers.

Rust armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed was sentenced to 18 months in prison over the October 2021 fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the Santa Fe set of actor-producer Alec Balwin’s western flick. “You alone turned a safe weapon into a lethal weapon,” Judge Mary Marlow Sommer said in her Monday sentencing after rejecting the defense's pleas for probation and counseling.

As per a report by The Guardian, the state judge who handed down the sentence noted that Gutierrez-Reed was responsible for keeping the set safe, but she failed to do so. She said, “You were the armorer, the one that stood between a safe weapon and a weapon that could kill someone."

For the unversed, Hutchins’ killing in October 2021 sent shockwaves through the Hollywood film industry, sparking the rightful discussion of weapon safety on the filming sets. Rust star and producer, Alec Baldwin, had been practicing for a stunt scene involving the revolver when the firearm containing live rounds went off. The live ammunition struck Hutchins in the chest, killing her on the way to the hospital. A bullet also hit director Joel Souza, though he has since recovered from his injuries.

Baldwin for his part has denied any wrongdoing, stating he wasn't aware of the live ammunition in the gun. Ever since the tragic incident on his film set, Baldwin has maintained he did not pull the trigger. He too faces trial for involuntary manslaughter in July, with a sentence of up to 18 months in prison as well. 

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Meanwhile, here are the details from the sentencing hearing of Hannah Gutierrez-Reed. 

Probation Plea Denied for Gutierrez-Reed Despite Lawyer's Efforts

Hannah Gutierrez-Reed during her sentencing hearing on Monday, April 15 (Getty Images)

Exclaiming that her “heart aches” for the tragedy that unfolded on the Rust set, Gutierrez-Reed during her sentencing hearing called herself “young and naive,” and blamed the media for portraying her as a “complete monster.” She told the court that she had been overworked and under-resourced on the film. 

“I beg you please don't give me more time,” Gutierrez-Reed pleaded in a statement she read out before being sentenced. Her lawyer also requested probation on her behalf. “The jury has found me in part at fault for this God-awful tragedy but that doesn't make me a monster. That makes me human,” Gutierrez-Reed added. 

Judge Sommer, not buying any of it per Deadline, called out the former Rust crew member for not taking accountability and putting the blame for the live round in the gun on everyone but herself. “I did not hear you take accountability,” the Judge said in her sentencing. “Your attorney had to tell the court you were remorseful.”

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Colleagues and Friends speak in court for Halyna Hutchins

Halyna Hutchins (IMDb)

At the sentencing hearing on Monday, friends and family members gathered to share statements and remembrances for the late cinematographer. “I struggle to deal with this repeatedly being called an accident because it was not an accident, it was negligence,” said Jen White, Hutchins’ colleague. 

Hutchins’ mother Olga Solovey, appeared at the hearing via video conference from Kyiv, Ukraine, and said, “It's the hardest thing to lose a child. There are no words to describe it.” The grieving mother also expressed her outrage that none of the production staff attended her daughter’s funeral.

If you need support or know someone who is struggling with any kind of abuse, please reach out to your nearest mental health specialist, NGO or speak to someone about it. There are several helplines available for the same.

ALSO READ: Armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed Found Guilty In Rust Shooting Case: Faces Prison Time For Involuntary Manslaughter

FAQ

Who is Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and what is her role in the Rust movie?
Hannah Gutierrez-Reed was the armorer for the movie Rust, responsible for handling firearms and ensuring safety on set.

What was Gutierrez-Reed sentenced to prison for?
Gutierrez-Reed was sentenced to 18 months in prison for involuntary manslaughter following the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of Rust.

How old was Halyna Hutchins?
Halyna Hutchins was 42 years old at the time of her death.

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