A lead government medical examiner has officially made their ruling that states that actor Alex Baldwin’s fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins near the end of last year was entirely an accident.
As made by New Mexico’s Office of the Medical Investigator, this determination was officially made public this past Monday by the Sheriff’s office of Santa Fe County and comes just as news reports came to light over this past weekend about the results of an FBI analysis on the gun that was utilized.
As of writing, no choice has been made by the prosecution team about whether Baldwin will be issued criminal charges in the case while they continue to collect cell phone data.
Luke Nikas, the attorney for Baldwin, responded to this recent development in a release: “This is the third time the New Mexico authorities have found that Alec Baldwin had no authority or knowledge of the allegedly unsafe conditions on the set, that he was told by the person in charge of safety on the set that the gun was ‘cold,’ and believed the gun was safe.”
The forensic report from the FBI that was released this past weekend concluded that the revolver that was used during the fatal shooting could not have been fired unless the trigger was pulled.
The report, which was highlighted by ABC News, stated that the .45 Colt revolver “could not be made to fire without a pull of the trigger” while in a quarter-cocked position, a half-cocked position, and a fully-cocked position.
If the hammer for the revolver had been set into its de-cocked position, the gun could discharge a round by striking the hammer, which is a standard method in which a revolver operates.
As part of an interview that took place last year with George Stephanopoulos on ABC News, Baldwin stated that he pulled “the hammer as far back as I could without cocking” it, and then he “let go of the hammer,” and “bang, the gun goes off.”
Baldwin stated in that interview that “the trigger was not pulled,” “I didn’t pull the trigger,” “I would never point a gun at anyone and pull the trigger at them,” and “someone put a live bullet in a gun, a bullet that wasn’t even supposed to be on the property.”
The Washington Post put out its own fact-check article after the interview that highlighted various experts on firearms who stated their skepticism over Baldwin’s claims.
Mary Carmack-Altwies, the Santa Fe District Attorney, stated in a release earlier this month that nothing was officially being ruled out in regards to what could be done by prosecutors.
“Once the First Judicial District Attorney’s Office (‘FJDA’) receives the completed investigation from the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office (‘SFSO’), the FJDA will begin the screening process and any necessary follow-up investigation,” she stated in a release. “To date, my office has received portions of the Rust investigation from SFSO but is still awaiting the balance of supplemental reports including, but not limited to, the following: FBI firearm and tool mark analyses, forensic testing on the firearm itself, the forensic download from Suffolk County PD of Mr. Baldwin’s phone, and the pathology report from the New Mexico Office of the Medical Investigator.”
“Once SFSO receives those—and any other outstanding items—and completes its supplemental reports, the screening process will begin, and my team and I will make a charging decision,” she continued. “To expedite the FJDA review process, I have added retired Ninth Judicial District Attorney, Andrea Reeb to the team, as a special prosecutor for this case. To remain transparent to the local and national community, the FJDA will proactively disseminate information as it becomes available.”