On October 21, cinematographer Halyna Hutchins lost her life on the set of Rust, fatally injured by an accidental shot by Alec Baldwin. The investigation is continuing to determine why the weapon contained live ammunition.
What went well on the set of Rust? The investigation into the circumstances that led to the tragedy that claimed the life of Halyna Hutchins continues. On October 21, the director of photography was killed on the set of the western, hit by a revolver bullet accidentally fired by Alec Baldwin.
Since then, the Santa Fe police, in charge of the investigations, have tried to clarify the circumstances that led to this tragedy. Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, chief gunsmith on the set, was questioned by investigators. She recently made statements that shed some light on the situation.
According to a document released Tuesday by the Santa Fe sheriff’s services, the young woman told police that she had loaded 5 dummy cartridges into the pistol just before the lunch break. When resuming filming, she said that she had removed the revolver from its box, added a 6th cartridge in it and then handed it over to another member of the team.
Reed then confessed that she had “not much verified” the gun because it had been locked up during the lunch break. The gunsmith had already claimed some time before that she did not know how live ammunition had landed on the set.
Santa Fe Police seized more than 500 ammunition on set, a mixture of blank bullets, dummy cartridges, and some suspected real ammunition. According to investigators, a few leads should be checked to explain the presence of real bullets on the set. The latter are strictly prohibited on sets by the rules in force in the cinema industry in the USA.
A TRACK IS DRAWN
One of those leads turns to one of the suppliers of the ammunition used on the set of Rust, Seth Kenney. The man said he may have sold the production of handcrafted bullets, potentially from recycled elements, the logo of which matches the one on the offending deadly cartridge.
As for Hannah Guttierez-Reed’s father, Thell Reed, a renowned film gunsmith, he said he provided Seth Kenney with live ammunition. “artisanal” for the needs of a film they had collaborated on in the past.
Reed maintains that his coworker never returned them to him. New elements which will have to be verified by the police and which will lead to a possible trial against those responsible for this tragedy. So far, no arrests have taken place.