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Opening statements underway in Alec Baldwin’s manslaughter trial

Last Updated 2 weeks by Amnon J. Jobi | Amnon Front Page

Opening arguments in actor Alec Baldwin’s manslaughter trial got underway Wednesday morning in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

The case stems from the 2021 shooting on the movie set of “Rust,” in which Baldwin is accused of firing a live round that fatally struck the films director of photography, Halyna Hutchins, and injured director/writer Joel Souza.

The trial could have significant consequences for Baldwin, who faces the possibility of up to 18 months in prison if convicted of involuntary manslaughter.

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Jury selection wrapped up Tuesday with five men and 11 women selected. Twelve of them will be seated on the jury, and four others will serve as alternates.

Prosecutors argue Baldwin disregarded established protocols, including inadequate firearm training, and allowed unsafe conditions on set, ultimately leading to the tragic outcome. They contend Baldwin was negligent in handling the firearm, contradicting his claim that the gun discharged without him pulling the trigger.

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In response, Baldwins defense asserts that safety on set rested with professionals like armorer Hannah Gutierrez and assistant director David Halls, who had been entrusted with ensuring the firearms were safe and properly managed. In a cross-complaint filed by Baldwins defense, they argue that neither Baldwin nor others present were aware that live ammunition had been loaded into the gun, believing it to be safe for use.

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As the legal proceedings commence, all eyes are on Baldwin and the courtroom drama that will unfold, seeking answers and accountability for the tragic events that have profoundly impacted all involved in the production of Rust.

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