Gun Expert Dismisses Baldwin’s Claim About Gun On Rust Set – Bearing Arms

Gun Expert Dismisses Baldwin’s Claim About Gun On Rust Set – Bearing Arms

In the immediate aftermath of the shooting death of Halyna Hutchins, actor and anti-gun activist Alec Baldwin claimed the gun just went off. This, of course, is the case with almost every negligent discharge in human history, particularly when someone else was hurt.

Yet that never really made a lot of sense.

Yes, it’s a single-action pistol and those could be tricky back in the day, but most have safety features today that prevent such a thing.

Still, Baldwin has insisted.

Right now, though, armorer Hannah Reed-Gutierrez is on trial for the death, which means she and her attorneys have to at least create a reasonable doubt about whether she’s responsible. That means addressing the fact that Baldwin was holding the gun.

That just went off.

Only, according to an expert, it didn’t.

An independent gun expert has cast new doubt on Alec Baldwin’s account of what happened when cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was shot on the set of the western film Rust.

Firearms expert Lucien Haag gave evidence in court on Tuesday during the trial of the film’s armourer, Hannah Gutierrez, who is charged with involuntary manslaughter and tampering with evidence.

The Hollywood star, also a producer on the film, has pleaded not guilty to a charge of involuntary manslaughter and will face a separate trial in July. He has previously claimed the gun went off without him pulling the trigger, and has not appeared in court for Gutierrez’s hearing.

On Monday, an FBI expert told the court in Santa Fe the revolver used by Baldwin on set was fully functional with safety features when it arrived at an FBI laboratory for testing. The expert said he had to strike the fully-cocked gun with a mallet and break it in order for it to fire without depressing the trigger.

Giving evidence the following day, Mr Haag provided a lengthy demonstration of the workings of a single-action Colt revolver, like the gun held by Baldwin, and safety features that prevent a fully cocked hammer from striking and firing ammunition unless the trigger is depressed.

He saw no evidence the gun was broken or modified before it was tested by the FBI, he told the court.

This doesn’t get Gutierrez off the hook by any stretch of the imagination, but it does at least put some of the onus on Baldwin.

What’s more, all of this is likely to come up at the actor’s upcoming manslaughter trial.

See, if the gun “just went off” as Baldwin alleges, then that’s one more thing he could put on the armorer versus being blamed for. He still had it pointed in an unsafe direction, but if his finger wasn’t on the trigger when it discharged, then it was an unsafe gun.

But that’s not the case. The gun had modern safety features intended to prevent that and those features actually worked. There’s no evidence to suggest the gun was tampered with prior to examination, either.

In other words, Baldwin had to have pulled the trigger.

Look, I’m sure there’s a lot of blame to go around. Baldwin gets a lot of it from us because he’s been vocal in his support for gun control, then fails to control the gun in his own hands, killing an innocent woman.

Gutierrez may well end up behind bars for ultimately being inexperienced but if that happens, Baldwin needs a cell of his own. Had he simply done something rather common sense–something he’d have learned during is training if he hadn’t blown it off–Hutchins would be alive right now.

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