In recent news, the prosecutor dropped a firearm enhancement charge against the actor Alec Baldwin for the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins at the “Rust” movie shooting in New Mexico in 2021. Let’s explore the details of the news with Ehline Law and our personal injury attorneys.

Firearm Enhancement Charge Against Alec Baldwin and Gutierrez Reed Dropped Following Fatal Shooting

Lawyers from Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, representing Alec Baldwin, stated in a recent court filing that the prosecutors were incorrect when charging their client with firearm enhancement charges which could potentially add five more years to the prison sentence.

District Attorney’s Office Deems Motion to Dismiss Charges as Litigious Distractions by Alec Baldwin’s Lawyers

In a motion filed on February 10, Baldwin’s lawyers called the move unconstitutional due to a change in the New Mexico firearm law in May 2022, seven months after the shooting incident. 

However, special prosecutor Andrea Reeb referred to Baldwin’s attorneys in an email as “fancy lawyers.” She claimed that the legal moves were further litigious distractions by Mr. Baldwin’s attorneys to distract the public from the criminal case Alec Baldwin faces.

Seeking Justice, Not Securing Billable Hours: Spokesperson of District Attorney Claims

According to Heather Brewer, a representative of the New Mexico First Judicial District Attorney’s Office, the prosecution’s priority is securing justice rather than working in the interests of “big city attorneys” helping them in securing billable hours.

Several minutes after sending the email, Reeb said she would look into the matter. Soon after, she admitted that Baldwin’s attorneys were right and the prosecutors were wrong in pursuing a firearm enhancement charge against the actor.

Days later, the New Mexico First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies dropped the firearm enhancement charge that could’ve added five years more to Baldwin’s sentence if convicted. 

Baldwin still faces involuntary manslaughter charges and, if convicted, could face 18 months in prison for the killing of Halyna Hutchins.

Baldwin and His Attorneys Want Reeb out from the Case, Calls It Unconstitutional

According to Baldwin’s attorneys, Reeb is not constitutionally permitted to take on the case since she already serves in New Mexico’s legislature. Under the New Mexico’s Article III of the constitution, anyone serving in one government branch cannot simultaneously offer their services in another.

Alec Baldwin is not the only one facing legal heat from the prosecutors in New Mexico, as the prosecution also charged armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed with involuntary manslaughter. However, after rectifying their mistake in pursuing firearm enhancement charges against Alec Baldwin, they also dropped the same charge against Hannah Gutierrez Reed.

Is the Prosecutor’s Mistake a Terrible Miscarriage of Justice?

Prosecutors have demanding jobs and high caseloads, which can sometimes lead them to make mistakes. However, prosecutorial misconduct can occur when the prosecutor intentionally breaks the law or violates the code of professional ethics. 

Alec Baldwin is a big star in the movie industry. Prosecutors could easily be blinded by potential success in their legal careers if they prove the involuntary manslaughter charges against famed celebrities. 

Perhaps, the firearm enhancement charges were an honest mistake, or maybe it could be that the prosecutors were under pressure to indict Alec Baldwin.

Schedule a Free Consultation with Ehline Law

A criminal proceeding against a defendant should not stop surviving family members from pursuing civil litigations against them to recover compensation for the damages incurred.

In the case of the “Rust” fatal shooting, the family members of Halyna Hutchins decided to bring civil suits against the production team and Alec Baldwin to obtain damages, with the husband settling his civil case for an undisclosed amount.

If you’ve lost a loved one due to another’s negligence or recklessness, contact us at (833) LETS-SUE for a free consultation, as you may be able to seek compensation.


Michael Ehline

Michael Ehline is an inactive U.S. Marine and world-famous legal historian. Michael helped draft the Cruise Ship Safety Act and has won some of U.S. history’s largest motorcycle accident settlements. Together with his legal team, Michael and the Ehline Law Firm collect damages on behalf of clients. We pride ourselves on being available to answer your most pressing and difficult questions 24/7. We are proud sponsors of the Paul Ehline Memorial Motorcycle Ride and a Service Disabled Veteran Operated Business. (SDVOB.) We are ready to fight.

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Ehline Law Firm Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC