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Ammo supplier testifies he never provided live rounds to 'Rust' set

A photograph of Halyna Hutchins, the cinematographer killed on the set of 'Rust,' was on display as a news conference held by the Dordick Law Corporation in Los Angeles on November 10, 2021. 'Rust' armorer Hanna Gutierrez-Reed is standing trial for involuntary manslaughter. File Photo by Carolina Brehman/EPA-EFE
A photograph of Halyna Hutchins, the cinematographer killed on the set of 'Rust,' was on display as a news conference held by the Dordick Law Corporation in Los Angeles on November 10, 2021. 'Rust' armorer Hanna Gutierrez-Reed is standing trial for involuntary manslaughter. File Photo by Carolina Brehman/EPA-EFE

March 4 (UPI) -- A business owner who supplied prop firearms for the movie Rust testified Monday he never gave live ammunition to the production as prosecutors sought to prove manslaughter charges against the film's armorer.

Seth Kenney, the owner of PDQ Arm & Prop in Albuquerque, N.M., said on the witness stand that he made sure no live ammo was sent to the independent Western production during his dealings with armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed.

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Rather, he said, he only sent over boxes of dummy rounds after checking to make sure they "rattled," unlike live ammo, ABC News reported.

"I do not send out any dummy round that doesn't rattle," he said.

Live ammunition loaded into a prop gun fired by the film's star and producer, Alec Baldwin, resulted in the on-set death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on Oct. 21, 2021, near Santa Fe, N.M.

Gutierrez-Reed, 26, has been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the incident and is standing trial in Santa Fe. Baldwin also is facing involuntary manslaughter charges and is scheduled to stand trial in July. Both have pleaded not guilty.

Investigators initially focused on Kenney as the possible source of the live ammo on the set of Rust, and he has been cited as possibly responsible for Hutchins' death by Gutierrez-Reed's defense attorneys.

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But during their investigation, police did not find any live rounds in Kenney's Albuquerque shop that resembled the ones found on the Rust set, according to Deadline.

During his Monday testimony, Kenney described a tense relationship between himself and Gutierrez-Reed, who is the daughter of his friend, long-time Hollywood movie armorer Thell Reed, the publication reported.

He said that in the aftermath of Hutchins' death, he sensed the pair were attempting to pin the blame of the accident on him.

"Knowing Thell and having been friends with him for a few years at that point, I know how much he loves his daughter," Kenney said.

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