Alec Baldwin and Rust Producers Sued Over Fatal Shooting: He 'Chose to Play Russian Roulette'
Alec Baldwin and Rust producers have been named in a lawsuit filed by the film's script supervisor.
Mamie Mitchell, who worked on the set of the movie, called 911 after Baldwin shot a gun on the set of Rust that killed the film's cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and injured director Joel Souza. In a lawsuit obtained by PEOPLE, Mitchell reportedly alleged she was injured from the shooting and is suing for assault, intentional infliction of emotional distress and deliberate infliction of harm.
During a press conference on Wednesday, Mitchell and her lawyer Gloria Allred spoke to reporters about the complaint via SkyNews. Mitchell said, "I'll never forget what happened on the set of Rust that day."
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"I relive the shooting and the sound of the explosion from the gun over and over again," Mitchell continued. "I'm depressed, I don't feel safe, I feel like at any moment anything can happen to me and to those that I care about standing close to me. I don't have a sense of guardrails in my life to keep me safe. I am frightened of the future. This violent tragedy has taken away the joy of my life. I have also lost a new friend who was an extraordinary and rare person and future collaborator. Halyna was a woman who spoke the same language of film as I did and I have been robbed of my friend."
Allred also made a statement, telling reporters, "In our lawsuit, we allege that on October 21, 2021, Alec Baldwin fired a loaded gun killing Halyna Hutchins, injuring Joel Souza and causing physical and emotional injuries to Mamie Mitchell, the script supervisor who was standing in the line of fire when the gun went off."
Baldwin's rep did not comment on the lawsuit.
"Days before the shooting there were warning signs that there were dangerous conditions related to guns on the site, a camera operator had reported two gun discharges during a rehearsal in a cabin," Allred said, adding, "Important industry safety protocols designed to ensure firearms would be safely used were ignored and actions were taken that were against all industry norms."
Allred also addressed Baldwin, saying, "In our opinion, Mr. Baldwin chose to play Russian roulette when he fired a gun without checking it and without having the armorer do so in his presence. His behavior and that of the producers on Rust was reckless."
"The fact that live ammunition was allowed on a movie set, that guns and ammunition were left unattended on a cart and allowed to be handled by those who had no business handling them, the fact that safety bulletins were not promulgated or ignored makes this a case where injury or death was much more than a possibility, it was a likely result."
Mitchell also said in her complaint that the Rust script didn't call for a gun to be discharged, according to the court documents.
"It was discussed that there would be [three] tight camera shots when filming resumed [after a lunch break]," Mitchell reportedly said in the lawsuit. "One camera shot would be focused on Defendant Baldwin's eyes, one would be focused on a bloodstain on Defendant Baldwin's shoulder, and the third would focus on Defendant Baldwin's torso as he reached his hand down to the holster and removed the gun. There was nothing in the script about the gun being discharged by Defendant Baldwin or by any other person."
The script supervisor stated in the complaint that Baldwin "should have assumed that the gun in question was loaded unless and until it was demonstrated to him or checked by him that it was not loaded."
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"He had no right to rely upon some alleged statement by the Assistant Director that it was a 'cold gun.' Mr. Baldwin cannot hide behind the Assistant Director to attempt to excuse the fact that he did not check the gun himself," the complaint continued.
The complaint also alleged that the cost-cutting measures on the film, including hiring an armorer who was not experienced, intentionally endangered the lives of everyone on set.
Hannah Gutierrez-Reed was the armorer on the set of the film and was apparently also named as a defendant in the complaint.
Last week, Baldwin was named in a different lawsuit filed by Serge Svetnoy, a gaffer on the set. Svetnoy sued Baldwin and the film's producers, as well as Guttierez-Reed and assistant director Dave Halls for negligence.
Svetnoy wasn't physically injured when Baldwin fired a gun that had a live round, fatally shooting Hutchins, but he alleged in the complaint that he was close enough that "discharge materials from the blast struck [him] directly."
"Simply put there was no reason for a live bullet to be placed in that .45 Colt revolver or to be present anywhere on the Rust set, and the presence of a bullet in that revolver posed a lethal threat to everyone in its vicinity," the complaint stated.
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On Oct. 27, Santa Fe County Sheriff Adan Mendoza said during a press conference that investigators had discovered "500 rounds of ammunition" on the film set, which included "a mix of blanks, dummy rounds and what we are suspecting are live rounds."
Gutierrez-Reed previously broke her silence about the shooting on set, saying in a statement via her lawyers that "untruths that have been told to the media," and that she was "devastated and completely beside herself over the events that have transpired."
Her attorneys claimed Gutierrez-Reed had "no idea where the live rounds came from" and said she was under pressure on the set from working two jobs as both armorer and props assistant.
Gutierrez-Reed told deputies that she had checked the rounds inside the firearm Baldwin used the day of the shooting to make sure the gun was loaded with "dummies," not real bullets, and that she locked up the guns in a safe on the prop truck, according to the search warrant affidavit. She also said no live ammunition was ever kept on the Rust set.
The Santa Fe County Sheriff refuted Gutierrez-Reed's claims about live bullets, telling Today on Oct. 28 that the armorer's statement was "obviously" not correct after Hutchins was killed on set by a live round.
"No, obviously it isn't," Mendoza said. "That was a live round that struck and killed Ms. Hutchins so that's not an accurate statement as far as I'm concerned."
Filming on Rust has been halted and an investigation into the Oct. 21 incident is ongoing. No charges have been filed at this time.