Alec Baldwin May Soon Be Charged for 'Rust' Shooting: Report

Alec Baldwin could soon face criminal charges for the shooting incident on the set of the film Rust that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, according to a recent report.

Last Thursday, The Santa Fe New Mexican reported that New Mexico's Board of Finance granted the Santa Fe District Attorney's Office more than $317,000 to prosecute four people connected to the October 21, 2021, shooting. The district attorney, Mary Carmack-Altwies, had filed an emergency request for $635,000 to cover the cost of prosecuting the case.

According to the newspaper, Carmack-Altwies did not name anybody who could be charged. However, it added that the district attorney's request said, "One of the possible defendants is well known movie actor Alec Baldwin."

The Santa Fe New Mexican also reported that when Carmack-Altwies was asked about specific charges that could eventually be made in the case, she said her office is "certainly looking at all the homicide statutes and any gun statutes under New Mexico criminal code."

Alec Baldwin attends a Broadway opening
Above, Alec Baldwin is seen at the opening night of the new play "Hangmen" on Broadway on April 21 in New York City. A new report suggests Baldwin may soon face charges for last year's shooting incident that resulted in the death of a cinematographer. The actor has said he did not pull the trigger to cause the gun to fire. Photo by Bruce Glikas/WireImage

When reached for comment by Newsweek, Baldwin's attorney, Luke Nikas, provided the statement below.

"Some media reports today draw false conclusions based on a letter from the Santa Fe Dist. Attorney. The DA has made clear that she has not received the sheriff's report or made any decisions about who, if anyone, might be charged in this case. And during my communications with the DA's office just a few weeks ago, after the August 30 funding request was submitted, I was told that it would be premature to discuss the case because they had not yet reviewed the file or deliberated about their charging decision. It is irresponsible to report otherwise. The DA's office must be given the space to review this matter without unfounded speculation and innuendo."

Baldwin has denied pulling the trigger of the gun in the shooting that killed Hutchins and injured Rust director Joel Souza. However, a forensic report from the FBI last month contradicted the actor's claims. The report concluded that the gun used on the set could not have gone off without the trigger being pulled. Nikas told USA Today after the report's release that that it was "being misconstrued."

Along with Baldwin telling ABC News' George Stephanopoulos during an interview last year that he did not pull the trigger, an assistant director for Rust also backed his claims.

David Halls, the assistant director, was reportedly the person who handed Baldwin the gun that fired the round that killed Hutchins. Halls' attorney, Lisa Torraco, spoke for her client during a December appearance on ABC's Good Morning America.

"Dave has told me since the very first day I met him that Alec did not pull that trigger," Torraco told reporter Kaylee Hartung.

Numerous lawsuits have been filed against Baldwin and other producers of Rust, as well as against film armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed.

KOB-TV, a local NBC-affiliated station in Albuquerque, reported that Carmack-Altwies said during a last Tuesday meeting with the finance board that her office expects the sheriff's office's final report to be released within a week. She said that once she has the report, her office would proceed with criminal charges if they are warranted.

Newsweek reached out to Carmack-Altwies' office for comment.

Update 09/26/22 4:50 p.m. ET: This story has been updated to include comment from Luke Nikas.