As a Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office deputy pulled into the movie set where a shooting involving actor Alec Baldwin had just happened, several people waved their arms and pointed towards a building. Inside, emergency responders found two people on the ground inside.
One was alert, the other was near-death — and would later die.
As police tried to provide care and secure the scene after the shooting, Armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed came walking back to the structure. In her left hand was the gun that has become the center of the investigation. The muzzle was pointed towards the ground.
The deputy asked Gutierrez-Reed about other weapons and she pointed them to a cart with guns and ammo. Gutierrez-Reed pointed to one box that was half-filled.
"Those are the rounds used today," she said.
The deputy took the other weapons and the ammo and placed them in his cruiser, or nearby, to secure the evidence.
"Hannah was very emotional and getting more agitated because of the incident," the deputy wrote in a report. "I advised Hannah she was not under arrested several times and put her in the rear of my unit with the passenger side rear door open, but the vehicle locked." New documents provide details on what police experienced when they arrived on the set of "Rust' moments after a prop-gun shooting. Alec Baldwin fired the gun that killed a crew member.
FIRST TO ARRIVE
The report is the first detailed account from police and emergency responders who arrived at the scene of a movie set in New Mexico on Oct. 21.
The shooting involved Baldwin firing a prop gun that he didn’t know contained a live round during rehearsals for a scene. A bullet hit director Joel Souza and cinematographer Hayelna Hutchins. Souza was hospitalized and Hutchins was killed.
On Nov. 30, the sheriff’s office released several reports from deputies who were part of the first response and the early investigation. There have been no criminal charges filed in connection to the case, but police continue to investigate.
The shooting was reported around 1:50 p.m. and described as an accidental shooting with a prop gun, according to the reports.
When emergency crews first arrived, they were directed towards a church on the set, one deputy wrote. Inside the church were two people on the ground, with several people crowded around. Souza was on the ground with his feet towards the front door and Hutchins had her head pointed towards the door.
Souza was conscious, talking and moving, the deputy noted.
Hutchins had an injury to the area under her right arm and her back. It appeared she had defibrillator pads placed on her, the deputy stated. The deputy tried to help place gauze pads on Hutchins.
But she was “breathing irregularly and her eyes were glassy and were locked into a stare,” the deputy wrote.
The deputy left the church to help coordinate getting Hutchins from the church to a nearby medical hospital.
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Once she was taken from the scene, the deputy returned to the scene and tried to secure the area. There were several people walking around and the officer noted there were 12 people in the church at the time of the shooting.
Another deputy arrived and that is when that officer encountered Hutchins.
Yet another officer was working to secure the crime scene with tape, and a man approached and said he needed to talk. The officer told the man he needed to wait until he was finished with his duties.
The man said he was the one who fired the gun. It was Alec Baldwin.
The deputy told Baldwin that he needed to wait by a prop truck and that another officer would speak to him about the incident.
Deputies then told Baldwin to follow him to the sheriff’s office for an interview. But, as they left, deputies allowed him to stop at the staging area to change his clothes, according to the reports. Baldwin changed out of his clothes in a trailer and the items were collected as evidence.
Baldwin then followed the deputy to the sheriff’s department, where police had the A-list actor wait in a briefing room until detectives could interview him. The reports do not reveal what was said in the interview.
At the hospital, a deputy spoke with Souza as he underwent treatment. A doctor told the deputy that it didn’t appear the bullet did severe damage and that medical personnel were readying to remove the bullet from Souza.
The director agreed to speak to the police before he got any medication to remove the bullet. Souza said the movie included old-West “6 shooter” type of guns, according to the reports. Souza said they were filming a gunfight scene near the church when the shooting happened.
Souza said he remembered an armorer handling guns before filming the scene. Souza said he thought he heard someone say the gun was “cold,” which meant that it was unloaded.
The director said he heard a loud “bang,” which didn’t sound like a blank round. Souza fell backward and saw another member of the cast bleeding.
The deputy asked Souza where the guns came from and the director said the armorers deal with that aspect and he wasn’t sure, according to the reports.
Doctors removed the bullet from Souza’s shoulder and the projectile was collected as evidence.
In a press conference a few days later, sheriff's officials said they collected more than 600 pieces of evidence. Those items are now the focal point and officials try to determine whether to file charges over the fatal shooting.
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