SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – Potential criminal charges against Alec Baldwin are unclear in the case surrounding the 2021 shooting death on the New Mexico film set of “Rust.” Less than two weeks ago, in late April, the newer special prosecution team on the case dropped an involuntary manslaughter charge against Baldwin, citing the need for more investigation.

Criminal charges could still be refiled for Baldwin’s alleged role in cinematographer Halyna Hutchins’ death. However, the situation represents just one of several dramatic changes that Santa Fe prosecutors have faced.

This week on KRQE News 13’s “New Mexico News Podcast,” longtime New Mexico criminal defense attorney Ahmad Assed rejoins Chris McKee and Gabrielle Burkhart to discuss the “Rust” prosecution. Assed shares insight on the many changes the prosecution has made in the case.

Could some of the procedural arguments been avoided? Should anyone expect criminal charges to be refiled against Alec Baldwin? Those questions and many more are discussed on this week’s episode.

On background – in February, the Santa Fe District Attorney’s Office was forced to soften the charge against Alec Baldwin after attorneys noted that a firearm enhancement Baldwin initially faced didn’t exist at the time of the shooting. The original special prosecutor, Andrea Reeb, stepped down from the case in March amid questions over the constitutionality of her role. Later, the New York Times published a series of candid emails about her joining the case.

State prosecutors were also forced to appoint a new set of special prosecutors to the case in April after Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer ruled the Santa Fe District Attorney’s Office either needed to step aside or try the case without a special prosecutor. All of these happenings took place after the New Mexico News Podcast published an episode in early February, questioning if “Alec Baldwin’s movie set shooting case would actually go to trial?”

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Download new episodes of the New Mexico News Podcast every Tuesday, starting around 5:30 a.m., Mountain time. Episodes are available on most podcast platforms including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcherand Podbean among many others.

Having trouble finding the show? Try searching your favorite podcast player with the term “KRQE” or “New Mexico News Podcast” (without the quotes). You can also use the links above to find the podcast on each respective service or listen to the audio player at the top of this post.

If you have a question, comment, or suggestion as to who should be interviewed on the podcast, let us know! Email the hosts at or