A cameraman who was on the “Rust” set the day Alec Baldwin shot and killed his cinematographer and wounded a director told investigators the 63-year-old actor was safe and responsible with firearms, according to a search warrant affidavit first obtained by FOX News.
“He noted that the actor observed all the safety protocols and even did an extra check-in with the crew to make sure no one was near him. Specifically, he made sure a child who was on set that day wasn’t anywhere near him when discharging the weapon,” the affidavit states.
The cameraman even commended Baldwin for his safety practices during another scene, the report states.
I have no reason to disbelieve the truthfulness of the cameraman’s statements to investigators, but I’ve heard similar claims before, when a negligent discharge resulted in death and/or injury. Everyone who has ever negligently shot someone has claimed they thought the weapon was unloaded.
That’s the thing about safe gun handling — you either practice it 100% of the time or you don’t. If you don’t, if you’re unsafe even once, you’re not practicing safe gun handling — period — and it only takes the briefest of missteps to kill or maim.
There has likewise been a lot of internet chatter about the so-called “prop gun.” To be clear, there was no prop gun. Baldwin used a real firearm. A normal Hollywood prop gun is incapable of chambering live ammunition. There are blocks inside the weapon that prevent a live or blank round from entering the chamber. Other versions of prop guns are made entirely or plastic, which is painted to look real from a distance. They have no moving parts. Real firearms, of course, have no such chamber blocks and lots of moving parts.
Who’s at fault?
There seems to be a lot of discussion about who loaded the pistol, who had custody of the weapon, who told Baldwin it was a “cold gun,” and who handed it to the actor.
In my humble opinion, none of this matters.
It’s all about who pulled the trigger.
What’s the very first thing any of us do when someone hands us a firearm? We check to make sure it’s not loaded. It’s a practice ingrained in us since we were children.
If Baldwin was the safe gun handler his cameraman described, he would have done the same, and he would have discovered that the weapon contained at least one live round.
Furthermore, no safe gun handler whom I’ve ever known would actually point a firearm at someone and pull the trigger, unless they intended to use deadly force. The four fundamental rules of firearm safety apply to movie sets, too. Hollywood actors don’t get a pass or another take when they violate firearm safety rules.
In my humble opinion, rather than focusing on the armorer, assistant directors or other support personnel, the blame lies with the end user.
Ultimately, Baldwin pointed a real firearm at another person and pulled the trigger. It doesn’t matter who was responsible for the weapon, who told him it wasn’t loaded or who handed him the gun.
In other words, Baldwin committed a reckless act that resulted in death. I’m pretty sure there’s a legal term for that.[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]