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Alec Baldwin Was Practicing Pointing Prop Gun At Camera When He Shot & Killed Halyna Hutchins, Late Cinematographer Said She Couldn't Feel Her Legs

Oct. 25 2021, Published 12:37 p.m. ET

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New details surrounding the fatal prop gun mishap on the set of Alec Baldwin's latest movie have emerged.

On Sunday night, the Santa Fe Sheriff's Office released two new witness accounts that detail what happened immediately before and right when 42-year-old director of photography Halyna Hutchins and 48-year-old director Joel Souza were shot by the actor at Bonanza Creek Ranch on the New Mexico set of the western film, Rust.

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The newly released documents, obtained by Radar, reveal that Baldwin was practicing a "cross draw" in a pew inside a mock church that called for him to point his prop gun – referred to as a "revolver" – directly at the camera behind which both Hutchins and Souza were standing.

Souza was apparently standing behind Hutchins and looking over her shoulder.

Per his interview with investigators, Souza said he remembers hearing a "loud pop" before realizing he and Hutchins were bleeding.

Hutchins was shot in the chest, and Souza was shot in the shoulder.

alec baldwin practicing pointing prop gun camera shot killed cinematographer halyna hutchins
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The director told investigators he recalls hearing the phrase "cold gun" (which indicates that a firearm is not loaded and is safe for use) while preparing for the scene. However, he said he could not remember whether the gun in question had been checked after the crew returned from a lunch break.

Cameraman Reid Russel, who was present for the tragic accident, gave additional insight.

"[Russel] said while preparing, there was a shadow coming from the outside light and they had to move the camera at a different angle from Alec," states the warrant. "He said Alec was trying to explain how he was going to draw out the firearm and where his arm would be at when the firearm was pulled from the holster."

"[Russel] was not sure why the firearm was discharged and just remembered the loud bang from the firearm," the document continues.

alec baldwin practicing pointing prop gun camera shot killed cinematographer halyna hutchins
Source: MEGA
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The cameraman went on to say that he recalls seeing blood on Souza and hearing Hutchins say she could not feel her legs.

"[Russel] said after the firearm was discharged, he remembered [Souza] having blood on his person, and [Hutchins] speaking and saying she couldn't feel her legs," states the record. "[Russel] stated once [Hutchins] was on the ground, medics began to treat her injury as she was bleeding while on the floor of the building they were in."

Souza told authorities that Hutchins stumbled backward and complained of pain before she was helped to the ground. She was eventually airlifted to the hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries. Souza was also transported to the hospital. He was treated and has since been released.

Both Souza and Russel recalled a less-than-smooth day on set prior to the fatal accident, as tensions between crew and production members soared.

Russel told investigators that filming was behind schedule after six members of the camera crew walked out that morning due to "issues with production involving payment and housing," noting that those who walked off had previously penned a "letter to production on disagreements."

He said that left the rest of the team with "much work to complete."

Souza also said production was behind schedule, explaining that there was only one camera available to use after the crew walked off.

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alec baldwin practicing pointing prop gun camera shot killed cinematographer halyna hutchins
Source: MEGA

"During the morning hours, the day started off late due to a camera crew that had quit and they had to find another camera crew to help film the movie," Souza told investigators.

"[Souza] said once they hired another camera crew to assist, the day was taking longer than usual because they only had one camera to do the filming," states the document.

The crew members who walked off were reportedly replaced with non-union workers and threatened with "security" if they did not immediately leave the premises.

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It is common for filmmakers to use real guns loaded with blanks instead of real bullets to avoid mishaps.

Production for Rust has been halted amid the "active, open investigation" of the shootings, while an "absolutely devastated" Baldwin is reportedly taking time off from his other projects.

No arrests have been made. The Santa Fe Sheriff's Office will hold a press conference on the matter on Wednesday.

alec baldwin practicing pointing prop gun camera shot killed cinematographer halyna hutchins
Source: MEGA
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