UPDATE: 4/20/23 8:45 p.m. ET.
The special prosecutors released a statement later on Thursday, April 20, about dropping the charges against Baldwin.
“Over the last few days and in preparation for the May 3, 2023, preliminary hearing, new facts were revealed that demand further investigation and forensic analysis in the case against Alexander “Alec” Rae Baldwin, III,” Kari T. Morrissey and Jason J. Lewis’ statement read. “Consequently, we cannot proceed under the current time constraints and on the facts and evidence turned over by law enforcement in its existing form. We therefore will be dismissing the involuntary manslaughter charges against Mr. Baldwin to conduct further investigation. This decision does not absolve Mr. Baldwin of criminal culpability and charges may be refiled. Our follow-up investigation will remain active and on-going.”
The lawyers also noted that the charges against will Gutierrez-Reed “remain unchanged.”
Original story below:
The criminal charges filed against Alec Baldwin for the tragic shooting on the set of Rust have been dropped.
“We are pleased with the decision to dismiss the case against Alec Baldwin and we encourage a proper investigation into the facts and circumstances of this tragic accident,” Luke Nikas and Alex Spiro, attorneys for the Beetlejuice actor, 65, said in a statement to the media, per ABC News, on Thursday, April 20.
Baldwin — who is starring and producing the movie — was facing two counts of involuntary manslaughter after he was holding a prop weapon that had real bullets inside on the film’s set in New Mexico back in 2021. The shot killed cinematographer Haylna Hutchins and injured director Joel Souza.
Following the fatality, production shut down and is scheduled to resume this week in Montana. Lawyers told the outlet that the film will continue without using any working weapons and any form of ammunition. Hutchinson’s husband, Matthew, will also serve as an executive producer in honor of his late wife.
Days after the accident occurred, Baldwin broke his silence and paid tribute to his late colleague.
“There are no words to convey my shock and sadness regarding the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother and deeply admired colleague of ours,” he tweeted in October 2021. “I’m fully cooperating with the police investigation to address how this tragedy occurred and I am in touch with her husband, offering my support to him and his family. My heart is broken for her husband, their son, and all who knew and loved Halyna.”
In February 2022, lawyers filed a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of Matthew and their son. The suit named the Boss Baby star as a defendant along with seven producers and numerous crew members. Eight months later, an undisclosed settlement was reached.
“We have reached a settlement, subject to court approval, for our wrongful death case against the producers of Rust, including Alec Baldwin and Rust Movie Productions, LLC. As part of that settlement, our case will be dismissed,” Hutchins’ widower said in an October 2022 statement to multiple outlets. He added that he had “no interest in engaging in recriminations or attribution of blame (to the producers or Mr. Baldwin).”
Despite sharing his remorse for the accident, Baldwin also faced a series of consequences. In January, prosecutors announced that Baldwin and film armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed were both charged with two counts of involuntary manslaughter which would include five years in prison — if convicted. The following month, the 30 Rock alum pleaded not guilty. The actor was released on personal recognizance as long as he abstains from alcohol, doesn’t speak with other witnesses of the shooting and doesn’t own a gun, according to court documents obtained by CNN.