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Potential legal woes mount after the 'Rust' shooting tragedy

Added 10-26-21 10:07:02pm EST - “Producers on the film, including star Alec Baldwin, might be civilly or criminally liable in the accidental discharge of a live round that killed the cinematographer.” - Npr.org

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Posted By TheNewsCommenter: From Npr.org: “Potential legal woes mount after the 'Rust' shooting tragedy”. Below is an excerpt from the article.

Actor Alec Baldwin, seen in 2015. Experts predict a tremendous legal fallout after Baldwin pulled the trigger on a gun used as a prop while filming Rust in New Mexico and unwittingly killed a cinematographer and injured a director. Seth Wenig/AP hide caption

Actor Alec Baldwin, seen in 2015. Experts predict a tremendous legal fallout after Baldwin pulled the trigger on a gun used as a prop while filming Rust in New Mexico and unwittingly killed a cinematographer and injured a director.

LOS ANGELES — Alec Baldwin the actor, who pulled the trigger on a prop gun while filming "Rust" in New Mexico and unwittingly killed a cinematographer and injured a director, likely won't be held criminally or civilly liable for the tragedy.But Alec Baldwin the producer might be, along with several others in leadership positions for the Western.

Experts predict a tremendous legal fallout from the tragedy, definitely in civil lawsuits and potentially in criminal charges. In addition to Baldwin, a call sheet for the day of the shooting obtained by The Associated Press lists five producers, four executive producers, a line producer and a co-producer. They, as well as assistant director Dave Halls and armorer Hannah Gutierrez, could all face some sort of liability even if they weren't on location Thursday. The payouts — which could be covered in part by insurance held by the production company, Rust Movie Productions — would likely be in the "millions and millions" of dollars."There was clearly negligence on the set," said Adam Winkler, a professor at the UCLA School of Law and a gun policy expert. "The producers had a duty to preserve the safety of the crew. There were obvious hazards on the set."Santa Fe-based District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies told the AP on Tuesday that the investigation remains in the preliminary phase and her office was far from making any decisions about whether any charges would be filed. She added that those involved in the production were cooperating with law enforcement. There are "a lot of people involved and a lot of moving parts," the first-term elected prosecutor said of the circumstances surrounding the shooting death on the set of "Rust."

Rust was being filmed at the Bonanza Creek Ranch in Santa Fe, N.M. Jae C. Hong/AP hide caption

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