Alec Baldwin Was Reckless With Guns Before ‘Rust’ Shooting, Prosecutors Allege

Prosecutors in the Alec Baldwin trial intend to argue that the actor displayed a pattern of recklessness with firearms on the set of “Rust” before the fatal shooting of the film’s cinematographer.

In a filing on Monday, prosecutors Kari Morrissey and Erlinda Johnson alleged that Baldwin fired a blank round at a crew member while using the crew member to establish a line of sight. The prosecutors also accuse Baldwin of engaging in “horseplay” with a revolver during training, and allege that he was “erratic and aggressive” during filming, which raised safety concerns.

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Baldwin is set to go on trial on July 9 in Santa Fe, N.M., on a charge of involuntary manslaughter in the death of Halyna Hutchins. The actor is accused of negligently pointing a replica of a vintage Colt revolver at Hutchins and pulling the trigger, causing her death. Baldwin has denied pulling the trigger, and pleaded not guilty.

In the filing, the prosecution spelled out the “other acts” evidence they intend to introduce to show that Baldwin’s carelessness was not limited to the fatal accident.

Much of that evidence was made public during the trial in February of Hannah Gutierrez Reed, the “Rust” armorer who loaded a live bullet into Baldwin’s gun, and who is now serving an 18-month sentence.

The jury in that trial was shown videos of Baldwin pointing his revolver in the general direction of the crew to direct them on where to position themselves, and firing a blank round after “cut” was yelled.

In another video, he could be seen rushing the crew to reload in order to quickly do another take. Another video showed Baldwin with his finger on the trigger of his revolver, in apparent violation of industry rules. Prosecutors also allege that in some videos, Baldwin would cock and un-cock his gun for no reason.

Prosecutors have previously alleged that Baldwin’s hot-headed behavior on set contributed to lapses in safety protocols.

The new filing also alleges that Baldwin insisted on not being held to industry safety standards when filming resumed on “Rust” in Montana some 18 months after the fatal shooting.

With the filing, the prosecution put the defense on notice of the evidence it intends to introduce, which gives the defense an opportunity to object. The prosecutors argue that the evidence is admissible, either as “intrinsic” evidence of the crime, or as “other acts” evidence that is relevant to a material issue in the case.

Such evidence would be inadmissible if it only underscored Baldwin’s character, without shedding light on anything material to the alleged crime. In an earlier filing, Morrissey referenced a “long history” of aggressive behavior on Baldwin’s part going back to 2007, including punching a man in a fight over a parking space and allegedly assaulting a photographer. The prosecutor has also stated that such episodes have “nothing to do” with the Hutchins case, and she is not seeking in the filing to raise them at trial.

Baldwin’s attorneys declined to comment.

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