Alec Baldwin Pleads Not Guilty After Being Charged With Involuntary Manslaughter For The Second Time Regarding Fatal ‘Rust’ Shooting
In a fairly expected unfolding of events, disgraced actor Alec Baldwin has pleaded not guilty to the new involuntary manslaughter charges filed against him for the tragic shooting on the set of Rust, which resulted in the injuring of director Joel Souza and killing of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
According to court documents filed on Wednesday the 31st of January, the actor pleaded not guilty to the recent charges filed against him and also filed a Waiver of Arraignment. The legal filings also stipulate that Baldwin must “obey all federal, state, tribal, and local laws, statutes, and ordinances.”
“I plea NOT GUILTY to all of the charges in the complaint or citation,” declared Baldwin in the document.
As part of the legal document’s Conditions of Release, the actor is required “not to possess firearms or dangerous weapons,” specifying that these include “any device that is capable of expelling a projectile by action of an explosion.” Further, Baldwin is also requested to “not consume alcohol or illegal substances.”
Baldwin is also advised to “not return to the location of the alleged incident” and “not leave the United States of America without written permission of the Court.” The conditions of release also stipulate that the actor is not allowed to “maintain contact with the defendant’s attorney” or “see and consult with an attorney.”
Further, the legal filing states Baldwin must “avoid all contact with the alleged victim(s) or anyone who may testify in this case.”
In October of 2023, Rust case Special Prosecutors Kari Morrissey and Jason Lewis issued a statement, declaring, “After extensive investigation over the past several months, additional facts have come to light that we believe show Mr. Baldwin has criminal culpability in the death of Halyna Hutchins and the shooting of Joel Souza.”
“We believe the appropriate course of action is to permit a panel of New Mexico citizens to determine from here whether Mr. Baldwin should be held over for criminal trial,” they added, prompting a response from Baldwin’s legal team.
In response to the Morrissey and Lewis’ statement, the actor’s lawyers Luke Nikas and Alex Spiro proclaimed, “It is unfortunate that a terrible tragedy has been turned into this misguided prosecution. We will answer any charges in court.”
On Friday the 19th of January, a New Mexico grand jury charged Baldwin with involuntary manslaughter. The original involuntary manslaughter charges were filed in February of 2023 and dropped in April of that year.
At the time the involuntary manslaughter charges against Baldwin were dropped, the Santa Fe District Attorney’s office formally announced that the actor was no longer facing the five-year minimum jail sentence for the tragic on-set shooting that took place in October of 2021.
Interestingly, shortly after the new involuntary manslaughter charges were filed against the actor, SAG-AFTRA issued a statement wherein they declared to stand behind Baldwin.
“An actor’s job is not to be a firearms or weapons expert. Firearms are provided for use on set under the guidance of multiple expert professionals directly responsible for the safe and accurate operation of that firearm,” the organization said in a statement obtained by Fox News.
They elaborated, “These duties include ‘inspecting the firearm and barrel before and after every firing sequence,’ and ‘checking all firearms before each use,'” adding, “The guidelines do not make it the performer’s responsibility to check any firearm.”
“Performers train to perform, and they are not required or expected to be experts on guns or experienced in their use,” SAG-AFTRA concluded.