Rust Armorer Seeks Prison Release Amid Baldwin's Legal Battle

 May 15, 2024

Hannah Gutierrez Reed, the armorer on the "Rust" set, has requested to be released from prison while she appeals her involuntary manslaughter conviction.

According to Fox News, Gutierrez Reed's legal team argues that if her appeal is successful, she will have served most or all of her sentence by then, making the appeal largely meaningless.

Gutierrez Reed, responsible for weapons on the "Rust" set, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter following the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins. The incident occurred when a gun held by actor Alec Baldwin was discharged, resulting in Hutchins' death. A judge sentenced Gutierrez Reed to 18 months in prison, criticizing her actions during the sentencing.

Legal Team Questions Jury Instructions

Gutierrez Reed's legal team plans to appeal her conviction, primarily focusing on issues they identified with jury instructions during the trial. Her lawyer, Jason Bowles, asserts that Gutierrez Reed is neither a danger to the community nor a flight risk. Bowles emphasized the potential futility of the appeal if she remains incarcerated for most of her sentence.

Judge Sommer, who presided over the case, noted the gravity of Gutierrez Reed's actions, citing her jailhouse calls discussing her modeling career. Sommer delivered a stern rebuke during sentencing, highlighting the seriousness of the offense.

Judge Criticizes Gutierrez Reed's Conduct

"For all the fanfare and pundits and finger-pointing that has been going on for over two years, we were able to seat a jury of her peers who confirmed that they could listen to the evidence received in court and determine the facts and apply the law," Sommer said before giving her ruling. "They found Ms. Gutierrez guilty of involuntary manslaughter."

The judge's criticisms extended to Gutierrez Reed's lack of criminal history, her character traits, and her young age, which her lawyers argued should mitigate her sentence. Despite these factors, Sommer underscored the recklessness involved in the fatal shooting.

Alec Baldwin's Upcoming Trial

As Gutierrez Reed seeks her release, Alec Baldwin is preparing for his involuntary manslaughter trial. Jury selection is set to begin on July 9, and Baldwin's trial is expected to last until July 19. His legal team has filed several motions to dismiss the indictment, with the first motion hearing scheduled for May 17.

The outcome of Baldwin's trial remains uncertain, adding another layer of complexity to the ongoing legal proceedings stemming from the tragic incident on the "Rust" set. Baldwin's role and the events leading up to the shooting continue to draw significant public and media attention.

Potential Implications Of The Appeal

Gutierrez Reed's appeal could set a precedent for how similar cases are handled in the future, particularly regarding the responsibilities of film set armorers. Given the circumstances, her legal team argues that releasing her during the appeal process is justified. They maintain that her continued incarceration undermines the potential success of her appeal.

Sommer's harsh words during sentencing reflect the broader concerns about safety protocols on film sets. The judge's remarks highlighted the preventable nature of Hutchins' death and the critical role Gutierrez Reed played in the chain of events.


Hannah Gutierrez Reed's request for release pending her appeal has brought new attention to her conviction for involuntary manslaughter in the death of Halyna Hutchins. Her legal team's arguments focus on the issues with jury instructions and her lack of risk to the community.

Meanwhile, Alec Baldwin's upcoming trial adds another dimension to the ongoing legal drama. The case has ignited widespread debate about safety protocols in the film industry and the responsibilities of those handling firearms. The quest for justice and improved safety measures continues as the appeals and trials proceed.

About Robert Cunningham

With years of experience at the forefront of political commentary, Robert Cunningham brings a blend of sharp wit and deep insight to his analysis of American principles at the Capitalism Institute.

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