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The armorer on the ill-fated “Rust” movie set is suing the prop supplier in a four-count civil lawsuit filed in a Bernalillo County, New Mexico, court.
Hannah Gutierrez Reed, who as armorer was evidently the person in charge of firearms-related movie props, appears to be pointing the finger at Seth Kenney and his firm PDQ Arm and Prop, LLC, in relation to the incident on October 21, 2021, at the Bonanza Creek Ranch in Santa Fe.
There, actor Alec Baldwin was allegedly holding a prop gun that discharged during a rehearsal, and that tragically resulted in the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and the wounding of director Joel Souza.
Reed’s 24-page legal complaint describes “Rust” as a low-budget film and one that had a “very ‘gun heavy’ western script” and with a “rushed and chaotic atmosphere” at times. It also provides detail about how the weapon in question was handled.
Baldwin, who was also a producer on the film, has claimed that he never pulled the trigger in the horrific incident. A criminal investigation is ongoing.
Reed’s complaint also suggests that she was not present during the rehearsal. She alleged that she would never have let Baldwin point the gun at Hutchinson “as part of standard safe gun practices,” and that Baldwin reportedly never scheduled cross-draw training that she had recommended. ‘
Reed also maintains that she would have reinspected the gun and the rounds and “instructed Baldwin on safe gun practice with the cross draw.”
Baldwin is not named as a defendant in this lawsuit, however.
At least two lawsuits have previously been filed alleging unsafe working conditions on the set, with more legal proceedings likely to follow initiated by various parties involved or allegedly involved, as to who is liable.
“Defendants distributed boxes of ammunition purporting to contain dummy rounds, but which contained a mix of dummy and live ammunition to the Rust production. Defendants knew or should have reasonably believed that the ammunition they supplied to the Rust production would be used in the filming of scenes involving the discharging of firearms,” the Reed lawsuit claims, in part.
“[F]alse representations caused live rounds to be introduced on set, resulting in a foreseeably catastrophic outcome,” the document, which is embedded below, also alleges.
In a December interview on “Good Morning America,” Kenney said, according to Newsweek, that “It’s not a possibility that [the live rounds] came from PDQ or myself personally. When we send dummy rounds out, they get individually rattle-tested before they get sent out.” He also insisted that “rounds recovered from his company by investigators did not match bullets found on the set.”
A complaint is a one-sided rendition of events as a plaintiff perceives it. The defendant or defendants then have an opportunity to submit a legal filing that sets forth their viewpoint.
Reed is seeking unspecified compensatory damages (generally out-of-pocket losses) plus punitive and treble damages, which are usually assessed to deter future misconduct, and has requested a jury trial
Lawsuits traditionally contain a bare-bones description of the allegations and the relief sought, with the specifics to be filled in during the evidentiary discovery process and at trial, if there is one.
The trend, however, perhaps in more high-profile cases, is to provide a lot more content, almost as if public opinion is being prioritized, particularly since many civil lawsuits wind up settled out of court.
As a separate matter, cops in New Mexico have obtained a search warrant for Alec Baldwin’s cell phone. Baldwin, a Trump-loathing liberal, and gun control advocate, has vowed to “1,000 percent comply,” eventually.
Baldwin refers to Jan 6 to blast right wing ‘hate’ over him killing woman on set, says it ‘takes time’ to turn over cellphone https://t.co/3DLg5gTFRi
— Jack Furnari (@JackBPR) January 9, 2022
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