Prosecution: Alec Baldwin Violated the Cardinal Rules of Firearm Safety

Alec Baldwin Rust movie set shooting
Alec Baldwin on the set of ‘Rust’

Prosecutor Erlinda Johnson opened the trial by telling the jury that the case was “simple” and “straightforward”.
Mr Baldwin “played make-believe with a real gun” and “violated the cardinal rules of firearms safety,” Ms Johnson argued.

“While it was a movie set, it was a real, live workplace for many people,” she said in her opening statements. “You will hear that this workplace was on a tight budget… and some of the people who were hired were inexperienced.”

Mr Baldwin’s defence team, however, argued firearms are treated differently on a film set, where each member of a cast has a designated role and obligation, including when it comes to safety and firearms.

“He was just acting as he’s done for generations, and it was the safety apparatus that failed them all,” Baldwin’s lawyer Alex Spiro said.

“Alec Baldwin committed no crime,” he said firmly, later adding: “It was an actor handling a prop.”

Those crew members responsible for safety – including [Hannah] Gutierrez-Reed and David Halls, an assistant director and safety co-ordinator – failed their jobs, he argued.

“Real bullets are never supposed to be on movie sets,” Mr Spiro said. …

A key issue during the trial is Mr Baldwin’s claim that he did not pull the trigger when the revolver he was holding went off.

Prosecutors took aim at the claim early, detailing the extensive FBI tests done on the weapon.

It “worked perfectly fine as it was designed,” Ms Johnson told the jury.

Mr Baldwin’s team also brought up the tests and noted that during one of them, the FBI destroyed parts of the weapon – thus preventing it from being used for further analysis as part of their defence.

— Christal Hayes, Samantha Granville and Emma Vardy in Baldwin ‘Played Make-Believe’ With Gun, Rust Trial Hears

9 Responses

  1. Anyone who is watching the trial :

    Has anyone noticed how much the prosecutor, Erlinda Johnson looks like she could be the sister of the judge, Mary Marlow Sommer?

  2. “He was just acting as he’s done for generations,

    So they’re going with the Joe Biden “confused, old man that would be difficult to presecute” defense.

  3. EVERY actor who has ever had a role in a movie or TV that required the use of a firearm in a scene has “played make-believe with a real gun” and “violated the cardinal rules of firearms safety” at one point or another. Accidents have happened before, and as long as real firearms are being used in films, it will likely happen again.

    Everyone on a movie set has a specific job. Actors act…directors direct….armorers oversee weapons.

    Baldwin is a moron, but in this incident the fault is squarely on the shoulders of the mental midget, that apparently couldn’t tell the difference between a blank and a live round, who loaded the gun.

    1. Every actor and member of the crew goes through a firearms safety course on every movie set prior to filming without exception. It is required by the insurer. In that course the 4 rules of firearms safety are an integral part of that training. It is understood that everyone set is responsible for the safety of all crew members and actors. Accidents don’t happen. Negligence does.
      Injuries or death involving prop weapons on set are rare : NPR

    2. Baldwin is an idiot, but as the Executive Producer, it falls back on his incompetences of A, hiring competant armorers B, his improper gun handling and failure to follow the 4 rules of handling a firearm. He also needs to be sued in civil court for his negligence

      1. The judge has ruled that Baldwin’s position as Executive Producer cannot be used as evidence against in the trial.

    3. Well, the Judge dismissed the charges against Baldwin today, with prejudice, because it was discovered that the prosecution was withholding evidence in order to make their case…and the armorer will likely be granted a new trail as a result.

      This whole thing is just a simple case of anti-gun prosecutors going rouge again…

  4. Juror submitted (rare to be a thing, but judge explicitly said they could do it in writing during opening) a question of “Do revolvers go off on their own?” to Mr. Pietta (Pietta’s owner, son of founder). Baldwin isn’t getting acquitted. He may get a hung jury/mistrial, but he’s not getting all of them to say not guilty.

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