‘Rust’ Shooting Couldn’t Have Occurred ‘Without a Pull of the Trigger,’ FBI Concludes
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has concluded that the firearm that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of “Rust” could not have fired “without a pull of the trigger while the working internal components were intact and functional.”
According to an FBI reported obtained by ABC News, the gun “could not be made to fire without a pull of the trigger.” Alec Baldwin, the star and producer of the Western, was holding the firearm at the time of the incident last October. Baldwin has stated that he was under the impression that he was holding a “cold gun” — one without live ammunition. The live round killed Hutchins and wounded director Joel Souza.
The FBI’s conclusion does not align with Baldwin’s previous statements regarding the tragedy. The actor has maintained that he believes that he did not pull the trigger on the gun prior to it firing.
“The trigger wasn’t pulled,” Baldwin told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos in an interview last December. “I would never point a gun at anyone and pull a trigger at them. Never.”
With the hammer in the quarter-cocked or half-cocked positions, the report states that the gun “could not be made to fire without a pull of the trigger.” With the hammer fully cocked, the report states that the gun “could not be made to fire without a pull of the trigger while the working internal components were intact and functional.”
With the hammer de-cocked on a loaded chamber, the gun could detonate a primer — but not a bullet, simultaneously — “without a pull of the trigger when the hammer was struck directly.”
The FBI made the conclusion after performing accidental discharge tests with a single-action .45 Colt caliber F.lli Pietta — the same model of revolver involved in the incident.
The FBI completed its ballistics analysis of evidence in the fatal shooting on Thursday. Detectives have been waiting for the FBI analysis before forwarding the case to prosecutors for consideration of potential charges.
Santa Fe investigators have yet to receive Baldwin’s phone records, nearly seven months after the actor turned over his phone to the Suffolk County Police Department in New York state. The team received a warrant to search Baldwin’s phone in December.
The New Mexico Office of the Medical Investigator, which performs coroner functions in the state, completed its report on Wednesday after receiving the results of the FBI analysis, concluding that Hutchins’ death was an accident.
Representatives for Baldwin were not immediately available for comment.