The FBI believes that Alec Baldwin likely pulled the trigger on the prop gun in the tragic on-set incident that left Rust cinematographer Halyna Hutchins dead and director Joel Souza injured last October.
Baldwin famously told George Stephanopoulos of ABC News that he had had not fired the weapon. "I would never point a gun at anyone and pull a trigger at them. Never," he said in the tell-all interview that aired in December.
Now, following a formal investigation which involved the FBI conducting accidental discharge tests on a single-action .45 Colt caliber F.lli Pietta, authorities came to the conclusion that it would not have been possible for the gun to discharge the way it did if someone did not pull the trigger.
The FBI report stated that with the hammer in the quarter and in half-cocked positions, the gun was not able "to be made to fire without a pull of the trigger." They later tested the weapon with the hammer completely cocked, but still, the weapon would not fire without the trigger being pulled "while the working internal components were intact and functional."
It is unclear if investigators tested the actual gun used by Baldwin on set or if they conducted their tests solely with an identical weapon.
The accidental discharge tests were only part of the FBI's ongoing investigation into Hutchin's tragic death. Although it is believed Baldwin must have pulled the trigger, they do not believe it was intentional act by the It's Complicated actor.
"Review of available law enforcement reports showed no compelling demonstration that the firearm was intentionally loaded with live ammunition on set," the FBI report read. "Based on all available information, including the absence of obvious intent to cause harm or death, the manner of death is best classified as accident."
As Radar previously reported, Baldwin has claimed to have been cooperating with police throughout the investigation from the moment of the accidental shooting. Questions arose after the actor turned over his phone to the Santa Fe police department in mid January, a month after they issued the warrant.
"Any suggestion that I am not complying with requests or orders, or search warrants about my phone, that's bullsh--. That's a lie," the Boss Baby voice actor explained in a video shared to his Instagram. "It's a process that takes time. They have to specify what exactly they want. They just can't go through your phone and take, you know, your photos or your love letters to your wife or whatever. But, of course, we are 1,000% going to comply with all that. We're, you know, perfectly fine with that."
ABC obtained the FBI report.