April 19, 2024

Experts Warn ‘Rust’ Trial Could be Devastating for Baldwin

The trial of the “Rust” armorer, Hannah Gutierrez Reed, has concluded and she has been sentenced to 18 months in jail.

That is the maximum sentence allowed for involuntary manslaughter.

According to legal experts, that is not a good sign for actor Alec Baldwin.

Bad Sign

Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was killed on set when Baldwin fired a gun at her while they were going over the scene.

Baldwin claims the gun went off on its own, continuing to insist that he never pulled the trigger.

Now, anyone that has ever handled a revolver knows that is virtually impossible while holding the gun.

As the movie's armorer, Reed was responsible for ensuring that the guns were loaded with only blanks and that no live rounds on set.

For her role in Hutchins’ death as well as her lack of remorse, the judge threw the book at her.

Baldwin is up next, and legal experts believe the maximum sentence Reed received is not good for Baldwin if he wins up being convicted.

Los Angeles personal injury attorney Miguel Custodio, co-founder of Custodio and Dubey LLP, stated, "This is bad news for Alec Baldwin and shows the court is taking this fatal shooting seriously and that it’s not just for show, as his defenders claim.

"A plea deal would be the best strategy for him right now, considering [Monday's] sentencing and the information the prosecution has about the chaos on the set and Baldwin’s failure to do anything about it. But I don’t see that happening.

"Baldwin may think that he will have an easier time if he believes that his team can convince a jury to see that the only culpable party has already been convicted.

“That’s a risky proposition, given Baldwin’s role as a producer actually involves him in all aspects of the production. Potential jurors will clearly know what went on with Gutierrez Reed and will really scrutinize Baldwin’s lack of responsibility for the chaos on the set."

Custodio also reminded everyone that the Baldwin trial will be held with the same judge behind the bench and in the same community that found the armorer guilty.

Additionally, in that first trial, defense attorneys did everything they could to shift the blame over to Baldwin so that information would already be out to the public.

It is tough to imagine that the person who held the gun and fired the shot would get off when the armorer in the movie was found guilty. As the legal experts stated, this will be a “heavy lift” for the Baldwin defense team.

Baldwin's one advantage is that he is an actor, so his responses will be well-rehearsed, and he is unlikely to make the same mistakes Reed made during her trial.

Having said that, the jury may also see through Baldwin's act, so he better come off as genuine, or he will be getting fitted for a jumpsuit instead of one of his fancy custom-tailored suits.

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