The Rust crew member in the spotlight how live rounds ended up in a gun that Alec Baldwin fired and killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins last October on set has pummeled New Mexico police today for their investigation of the tragedy.
In what could be a preemptive move as the Santa Fe Sheriff’s office prepare to submit their long awaited final report to the local D.A., armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed on Wednesday accused the cops of mishandling the matter almost from the jump. Sent out via her lawyer Jason Bowles a week after the FBI concluded the forensic study for the New Mexico police, Gutierrez-Reed said today:
The primary question in this case from the beginning has been where did the live rounds that ended upon the Rust set come from? As can be seen from the attached emails, the Sheriff’s office made a conscious decision not to pursue this question at all by refusing to ask the FBI to test any of the rounds for fingerprints or DNA. We now know for certain there were live rounds on set.
It is inconceivable that the Sheriff would not seek answers to this fundamental question and it raises a serious problem with the entire investigation. We have long sought this answer and will not give up in pursuing the truth to find it.
Accompanying digital correspondence from earlier today detailed a sometimes heated back and forth between attorney Bowles and detectives on the parameters of the police probe. “Given the fact the items were from movie sets, which had been handled over and over and over,” a Santa Fe Sheriff’s office detective tells Bowles of why they decided “as a team” not to seeking fingerprints and DNA samples. “It didn’t make sense.” As Wednesday’s statement in this seemingly perpetual public war of words makes evident, Bowles and his client aren’t going along with that.
What is unclear is what steps Gutierrez-Reed and her lawyer aim to take next.
Having long advocated a “sabotage” theory and sued Rust armorer/mentor Seth Kenney and his Albuquerque-based PDQ Arm and Prop. company back in January, the young armorer may have to wait to see what First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies’s next move is. In the meantime, Bowles and his team are continuing to use the arena of that civil suit to conduct their own investigation and taking depositions, we hear. Additionally, Gutierrez-Reed is named as a defendant in several lawsuits related to the horrors of Hutchins’ death, including a wrongful death action filed by the filmmaker’s family and estate in February against Baldwin and others
The Santa Fe Sheriff’s office did not respond to request for comment from Deadline on today’s statement and claims by Gutierrez-Reed. If and when they do, we will update
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