Attorneys for ‘Rust’ armorer claim sabotage is the reason behind fatal shooting
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Those representing the "Rust” armorer are claiming it may have been sabotage from a disgruntled crew member that led to one person getting fatally shot and another injured.
The armorer is Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who is in charge of all weapons on the film’s set, including the gun investigators say actor and producer Alec Baldwin fired, killing director of photography Halyna Hutchins and injuring director Joel Souza.
Gutierrez-Reed’s attorneys are from Albuquerque. Jason Bowles and Robert Gorence claim their client has been slandered and falsely portrayed. On Wednesday morning on the Today Show, they said sabotage led to the tragedy on set.
"I believe that somebody who would do that would want to sabotage the set, want to prove a point, want to say that they’re disgruntled, they’re unhappy,” Bowles said.”And we know that people had walked off the set the day before."
They believe someone on set put live ammunition into a box of dummy rounds, which Gutierrez-Reed unknowingly used to load the gun.
"We’re assuming somebody put the live round in that box,” Bowles said. “Which, if you think about that, the person who put the live round in the box of dummy rounds had to have the purpose of sabotaging this set.”
Bowles and Gorence added after their client loaded the gun, she gave it to assistant director David Halls who then reportedly handed the gun to Baldwin. Search warrants state the same. However, this week on Fox News, Halls’ attorney Lisa Torraco, who is also based in Albuquerque, maintained her client did not hand the gun to Baldwin and checking to see if the gun is loaded is not Halls’ responsibility.
"Whether or not he handed the firearm directly to Alec Baldwin at that moment or whether the armorer handed it directly to Alec Baldwin at that moment doesn’t really matter because he did not load it, he’s not responsible,” said Torraco.
As for Baldwin, on Tuesday he posted multiple screenshots on his Instagram page from a former crew member disputing claims staff was over worked and treated unfairly.
Gutierrez-Reed’s attorney, Jason Bowles, sent KOB 4 the following statement:
"Hannah Gutierrez Reed would like to add a few points to the continuing narrative on the tragic events surrounding the shooting on the “Rust” set. First, Hannah was incredibly safety conscious and took her job very seriously from the moment she started on October 4th. She did firearms training for the actors as well as Mr. Baldwin, she fought for more training days and she regularly emphasized to never point a firearm at a person. Never in a million years did Hannah think that live rounds could have been in the “dummy” Round box. Who put those in there and why is the central question. Hannah kept guns locked up, including throughout lunch on the day in question, and she instructed her department to watch the cart containing the guns when she was pulled away for her other duties or on a lunch break. Hannah did everything in her power to ensure a safe set. She inspected the rounds that she loaded into the firearms that day. She always inspected the rounds. She did again right before handing the firearm to Mr. Halls, by spinning the cylinder and showing him all of the rounds and then handing him the firearm. No one could have anticipated or thought that someone would introduce live rounds into this set."