Hannah Gutierrez Reed, armorer for the film, Rust, is suing the movie’s gun and ammunition supplier, alleging that they were negligent. This follows the on-set shooting that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, she claims they were reckless.
In the complaint filed Wednesday in the Second Judicial District Court in Bernalillo County, New Mexico, Gutierrez Reed accuses PDQ Arm and Prop, LLC. and its founder Seth Kenney of violation of trade practices, false and deceptive product labels, and false and material misrepresentations after, Gutierrez Reed alleges, Kenney sold her a cache of dummy ammunition with live rounds mixed in.
During a scene being filmed at the Bonanza Creek Ranch outside Santa Fe, actor Alec Baldwin fatally shot Aaron Hutchins on October 21. Director Joel Souza was wounded in the incident.
The actor explained to ABC last month that the shot would show Baldwin cocking the weapon and them discussing how she wanted his hand positioned before the shot rang out.
Kenney and his company “sold, distributed, and advertised its props as dummy ammunition and not live rounds,” the complaint said. “Hannah relied upon and trusted that Defendants would only supply dummy prop ammunition, or blanks, and no live rounds were ever to be on set.”
The complaint contains claims that Kenney attempted to “direct” the criminal inquiry into Hutchins’ death, casting blame on Gutierrez Reed, and including screenshots of text messages between them in which they appear to have a “fallout.”
The suit also includes claims that suggest criminal conduct by several other personnel on the set, including Baldwin, prop master Sarah Zachry, and assistant director Dave Halls.
The complaint includes a detailed chronology of Gutierrez Reed’s account of the day of the shooting, including the times leading up to and immediately following when the gun fired.
In the suit, one of the workers noted a period of about five minutes when Zachry and an assistant were away from the gun, leaving it unattended.
Gutierrez Reed claims that she loaded six rounds into the pistol herself and checked it in front of Halls, showing him the chamber filled with what she thought were dummy bullets.. Halls, in her account, said he would be “sitting in” with the gun, “meaning the gun wasn’t going to be used at all since this wasn’t a scene or rehearsal.”
According to the complaint, Halls supposedly ignored protocol by failing to contact her after Baldwin arrived and took possession of the weapon, and then explaining. She requested that Halls let her know when Baldwin returned so she might re-examine the gun.
“Her point was that if plans were to change for use of the gun to be more than just ‘sitting in’ status, Hannah needed to be called back into the Church,” the complaint reads.
The complaint claims that Baldwin never responded to Gutierrez Reed’s request for a “cross draw training” on October 15, just days before the shooting.
“Had Hannah been called back in, she would have re-inspected the weapon, and every round again, and instructed Baldwin on safe gun practice with the cross draw, as was her standard practice on set,” according to the complaint.
“Hannah would never have let Baldwin point the weapon at Halyna, as part of standard safe gun practices. Apparently, no one inside the Church stopped Baldwin from doing so, including AD Halls,” the suit says.
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