SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – Accused in the movie set shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, ‘Rust’ film armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed faced a judge for the first time Friday in a virtual court hearing. Gutierrez-Reed is charged with involuntary manslaughter after the October 2021 shooting involving actor-producer Alec Baldwin.
At the “first appearance” hearing Friday, Santa Fe District Court Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer set conditions of release for Gutierrez-Reed, allowing her to remain out of jail while awaiting trial. Gutierrez-Reed did not appear on camera for the 10-minute hearing as her attorney, Jason Bowles, spoke for her.
Judge Marlowe Sommer spoke of setting a status hearing in the case sometime in March. Both prosecutors and defense attorneys are still in the middle of making arguments for and against a motion filed by Baldwin’s defense team which is seeking to remove special prosecutor Andrea Reeb from the case. The case will also face a “preliminary examination,” or an argument before the judge over if there’s enough evidence to continue forward with a trial.
As an armorer, Gutierrez-Reed was hired to track and address proper handling of weapons on the ‘Rust’ film set at Bonanza Creek Ranch near Santa Fe. While other film armorers say it is a typical industry practice to prohibit live ammunition on movie sets, somehow, a live round was loaded into the prop gun on the ‘Rust’ set.
On October 21, 2021, actor-producer Alec Baldwin was handling the gun during an on-set rehearsal when the gun fired, hitting and killing Hutchins. The film’s director Joel Souza was also injured.
Gutierrez-Reed did not enter a plea in the case Friday. A judge also granted her permission to keep a weapon at home for purposes of self-defense, something prosecutors opposed.
In interviews with detectives, Gutierrez-Reed was told that multiple live rounds were found on the ‘Rust’ set. In response, Gutierrez-Reed told investigators, in part, “Yeah, that is news to me. Wow.”
Similar to Gutierrez-Reed, Baldwin has been charged with involuntary manslaughter. He waived his right to a first appearance in a filing Thursday. Baldwin also entered a not guilty plea in the case.
After a new settlement, the production company for “Rust” will be having a smaller fine. A settlement has dropped the fine to $100,000 from $136,000.
Also in the settlement, the citation issued by New Mexico’s Occupational Health and Safety Bureau is being downgraded from “willful-serious” to “serious.” Officials say the settlement is still awaiting approval.