Alec Baldwin and Hannah Gutierrez-Reed will both be charged with involuntary manslaughter in the October 2021 on-set shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins by the end of the month. Charges for Baldwin, the producer and star of Rust, and Gutierrez-Reed, the film's armorer, were announced Thursday by Santa Fe County District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies and special prosecutor Andrea Reeb and will be formally filed before Feb. 1.
No charges will be filed in relation to the shooting of Rust director Joel Souza, who was non-fatally injured in the incident, and assistant director David Halls has signed a plea agreement for the charge of negligent use of a deadly weapon, according to the press release. "After a thorough review of the evidence and the laws of the state of New Mexico, I have determined that there is sufficient evidence to file criminal charges against Alec Baldwin and other members of the Rust film crew," Carmack-Altwies said in a statement. "On my watch, no one is above the law, and everyone deserves justice."
Reeb added, "If any one of these three people – Alec Baldwin, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed or David Halls – had done their job, Halyna Hutchins would be alive today. It's that simple. The evidence clearly shows a pattern of criminal disregard for safety on the Rust film set. In New Mexico, there is no room for film sets that don't take our state's commitment to gun safety and public safety seriously."
Both Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed will be charged with two counts of involuntary manslaughter. Involuntary manslaughter is categorized as a fourth-degree felony in New Mexico and is punishable by up to 18 months in jail and a $5,000 fine.
"This decision distorts Halyna Hutchins' tragic death and represents a terrible miscarriage of justice," said Baldwin's attorney Luke Nikas of Quinn Emanuel in a statement obtained by PEOPLE Thursday. "Mr. Baldwin had no reason to believe there was a live bullet in the gun – or anywhere on the movie set. He relied on the professionals with whom he worked, who assured him the gun did not have live rounds." Nikas added that his legal team "will fight these charges, and we will win."