'Rust' armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed gets maximum 18-month sentence in movie set death

April 15 (UPI) -- Rust armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed received an 18-month prison sentence in a New Mexico court on Monday for her role in the fatal 2021 on-set shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.

District Judge Mary Marlowe Sommer handed Gutierrez-Reed, 26, the maximum sentence allowable under state law for involuntary manslaughter, agreeing with prosecutors who called her actions on the movie set "extremely reckless."


"You alone turned a safe weapon into a lethal weapon," Marlowe Sommer said. "But for you, Ms. Hutchins would be alive. A husband would have his partner, and a little boy would have his mother."

The judge said she handed down the maximum sentence partly because the armorer showed a lack of remorse.

"In your allocution you said you were sorry but not ... sorry for what you did," Marlowe Sommer said. "It was your attorney that had to tell the court that you were remorseful.


"The word remorse: a deep regret coming from a sense of guilt for past wrongs. That's not you."

A Santa Fe jury found Gutierrez-Reed guilty on March 6 of involuntary manslaughter but acquitted her of tampering with evidence. Prosecutors argued for the maximum sentence due to what they called a "complete and total failure to accept responsibility for her actions."

Her defense team has requested she receive probation, noting her "relative youth" and "complete lack of prior criminal history."

During the hearing, Gutierrez-Reed told the judge her "heart aches for the Hutchins family and friends and colleagues," and claimed to have done her job the best she knew how "despite not having proper time, resources and staffing."

"Today I humbly ask you to consider probation," he said.

Her plea came after Hutchins' friends and family members made statements to the court, including her mother, Olga Solovey, who submitted a video statement recorded in Kyiv, Ukraine.

"Time does not heal, it gets worse and worse." she said in Ukrainian, adding that no one connected to her daughter's death have expressed any remorse to her.


Gutierrez-Reed was the first person to face trial and be convicted in the case in which a prop gun held by Alec Baldwin, the film's star and executive producer, fired live ammunition, killing Hutchins and injuring director Joel Souza.

Prosecutors said Hutchins, a cinematographer on the set, died because of Gutierrez-Reed's "extreme recklessness" while working as the movie's armorer, who failed to properly maintain firearms safety.

Defense attorneys said Gutierrez has become a "convenient scapegoat" for what happened on set while others walked away from their responsibilities.

Baldwin is expected to stand trial for involuntary manslaughter in July. He has entered a not-guilty plea in the case. Baldwin has maintained that he never pulled the trigger, much less had any knowledge that the weapon was loaded with live rounds.

David Halls, the first assistant director of the movie, testified in Gutierrez's trial, admitting he was negligent in checking the gun properly and believed the weapon had "dummy" bullets inside.

Halls was charged with negligent use of a deadly weapon and sentenced to six months of unsupervised probation last year in a plea deal with prosecutors.

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