Government Ruling On Armorer From Alec Baldwin Shooting Revealed

By Michileen Martin | 3 weeks ago

alec baldwin

It’s been six months to the day that cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed on the set of Rust in Bonanza City, New Mexico. In the immediate wake of the tragic shooting, one of the first names to come up as a possible responsible party was Rust armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed. Reports came out painting the young crew member as inexperienced, unqualified, and negligent. As a result, before public opinion began to turn on Alec Baldwin, Gutierrez-Reed was painted as the one of the villains. Yesterday, a report came out that may change that. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) delivered its findings on the incident, and found that — in the words of the armorer’s lawyer Jason Bowles — Guttierez-Reed “was not provided adequate time or resources to conduct her job effectively, despite her voiced concerns.”

Deadline reported today on the response from Guttierez-Reed’s legal team, who see OSHA’s report as a sweeping vindication of their client. Bowles points out that the agency’s findings aim their fingers at the production team instead. He told the outlet the report proved “that production willfully failed to follow national gun safety standards, which caused this tragedy.” He also said that in preparation for “the impromptu scene” during which Hutchins and director Joel Souza were shot by a gun Alec Baldwin was allegedly holding, that the armorer was not called “to perform her armorer duties and inspect the firearm.” If she had, Bowles argued, the shooting would never have happened.

Among other allegations aimed at Hannah Guttierez-Reed shortly after the fatal shooting was that she had allowed crew members to use the same firearms Alec Baldwin and other cast members were using for target practice. A former co-worker of Guttierez-Reed’s — Stu Brumbaugh, a key grip on the upcoming Western The Old Way — told The Wrap he’d pushed for Guttierez-Reed to get fired as armorer on that film after she got a verbal beat down from Nicolas Cage. Brumbaugh claimed the armorer discharged a firearm on set without warning, and said that Cage yelled at her, “Make an announcement, you just blew my f—ing eardrums out!”

By the end of last October, Guttierez-Reed’s lawyers released a statement, emphatically denying the allegations about the armorer loaning out guns to crew members. Soon after, her legal team began promoting the notion that the tragedy was caused by sabotage. Their theory put forth the idea that things were so bad on the set of the Alec Baldwin led Western, that some disgruntled crew member had purposely mixed live rounds with blanks and dummies.

alec badlwin

The OSHA report, as it appears on Deadline, does seem to exonerate Guttierez-Reed to at least some extent. For example, it reproduces part of an email between the armorer and Rust Line producer Gabriel Pickle, who THR claims has a history of labor violations. The armorer was apparently supposed to split her time between armorer duties and props work on the Alec Baldwin Western, and in the email — dated a week before the shooting — Pickle chastises Guttierez-Reed for focusing too much on Armorer duties and not enough on her props work.

New Mexico’s OSHA slapped Rust producers with the maximum fine available — $136,793 — for what the agency called the producers’ “willful and serious” violations of safety protocol. While that number may seem criminally low, the OSHA report’s findings will no doubt give plenty of ammunition to the various parties who have levied lawsuits against Alec Baldwin and the other producers of Rust, including Halyna Hutchins’ family.