According to a recent FBI study, Alec Baldwin’s shootout on the set of Rust killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, though the actor previously denied it.
The .45 Long Colt caliber F.lli Pietta single-action revolver used in the film could not be fired with the trigger action, according to the FBI investigation report (obtained by ABC News). The FBI forensic report referenced above appears to have come to a conclusion following “unintentional discharge testing” of the F.lli Pietta gun.
What did the FBI’s forensic investigation into the shooting of the Rust film reveal?
The FBI report appears to have examined a variety of scenarios involving turret hammer placement. According to ABC News, the gun could have fired the bullet in “quarter and half-cock positions” with just a pull of the trigger.
The gun “could not be made to fire without pulling the trigger if the working internal components were intact and functional” when the hammer was fully cocked.
The report added that when the hammer was decocked, the rifle was still able to fire the fuse. In this case, the hammer was struck directly.
Alec Baldwin reportedly fired the prop revolver that killed Halyna Hutchins on the set of Rust, but the actor’s lawyers seem to dispute that claim.
Luke Nikas, Baldwin’s attorney, claimed the FBI report was “misconstructed.” He explained:
“You are misinterpreting the FBI study. When the hammer was pulled back during testing, the gun fired only once at a time without having to pull the trigger, and it broke in two separate places. In previous tests, the FBI was unable to fire the gun even when the trigger was pulled due to its horrific condition.”
The lawyer continued by saying:
New Mexico authorities have found, “This is the third time that Alec Baldwin had no authority or knowledge of the allegedly unsafe conditions on set to have been assured by the person responsible for on-set security that the gun was “cold.” ‘ and thought the gun was safe.’
Earlier comments from Alec Baldwin regarding not firing the gun at Rust
In early December 2021, 64-year-old actor Alec Baldwin spoke out about the tragic incident on the set of Rust. He admitted to ABC’s George Stephanopoulos that he did not fire the shot. Baldwin claimed:
“Well, nobody fired the trigger. I refrained from firing the gun. Never in a million years would I point a gun at someone and pull the trigger. Never.”
Baldwin’s accounts of the sad October 21, 2021 incident that resulted in the death of Rust cinematographer Halyna Hutchins appear to conflict with the findings of the most recent FBI report.
However, Baldwin could not be wrong if he didn’t pull the trigger, as there is no evidence that the FBI used the same investigative testing pistol that was used on the set of the Rust film. It’s impossible to tell if the original gun failed on set or if the revolver used by the FBI was just a replica of the revolver that killed Hutchins.