Armorer bought live rounds before 'Rust' shooting, prop supplier told police

Reuters · 05/11/2023 02:53
Armorer bought live rounds before 'Rust' shooting, prop supplier told police

By Andrew Hay

- The prop supplier for “Rust” said the movie’s armorer told him that before the production she bought the same type of ammunition as the live round that killed the cinematographer during filming in 2021, according to sheriff’s office records.

Armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed is the only person still facing charges in the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins after prosecutors in April dismissed a charge against actor Alec Baldwin based on evidence.

Investigators have been able to establish the source of the live round that killed Hutchins on Oct. 21, 2021.

In text messages released by the Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office (SFCSO) in response to a Reuters public records request, Seth Kenney, owner of prop supplier PDQ Arm & Prop, told SFCSO Detective Alexandria Hancock that Gutierrez-Reed told him in a telephone conversation after Aug. 3, 2021, that she had bought live .45 long Colt ammunition to shoot in her own gun.

Gutierrez-Reed's lawyer Jason Bowles told Reuters that such conversation took place, that she had bought had access to live long Colt .45 ammunition and that her father kept her long Colt .45 revolver at a location Gutierrez-Reed did have access to.

Gutierrez-Reed has told police she loaded the live round into Baldwin's revolver, mistaking it for a dummy round. She said she did know how live rounds got onto the set.

Kenney did respond to a request for comment. Gutierrez-Reed sued Kenney in 2022, alleging he supplied live rounds to "Rust" and misrepresented them as dummy rounds. Kenney has denied supplying live rounds and has been charged.

SFCSO declined to comment. Special prosecutors on the case did respond to a request for comment.

Hutchins was killed when a revolver chambered in .45 long Colt that Baldwin was rehearsing with fired a live round that killed Hutchins and injured director Joel Souza on a set outside Santa Fe.

(Reporting By Andrew Hay in Taos, New Mexico; Editing by Gerry Doyle)