Alec Baldwin pleaded not guilty on Thursday to involuntary manslaughter in the “Rust” shooting that resulted in the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins.
The actor also waived his first court appearance, which was scheduled to take place on Friday during a pretrial hearing. New Mexico Judge Mary Marlow Sommer has now canceled the Friday hearing.
Baldwin has denied the allegations.
On Monday, New Mexico prosecutors dropped firearm “enhancement” charges against Baldwin and “Rust” armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reid, a tier above regular manslaughter charge that carries a mandatory minimum of five years. With only manslaughter charges remaining, Baldwin and Gutierrez-Reed could wind up doing little or no jail time, as the maximum sentence in New Mexico is 18 months.
After Baldwin and Hutchins were formally charged, Hutchins’ family expressed relief. “It is a comfort to the family that, in New Mexico, no one is above the law. We support the charges, will fully cooperate with this prosecution, and fervently hope the justice system works to protect the public and hold accountable those who break the law.”
The parents and sister of Hutchins filed a civil lawsuit against the film’s production companies and principals, including Alec Baldwin, earlier this month.
Baldwin was practicing with a Colt .45 that accidentally fired, killing Hutchins and wounding director Joel Souza in October 2021. The incident has sparked a flurry of lawsuits, including one from Hutchins’ husband Matthew, whose wrongful-death litigation is in settlement talks – including his addition as an executive producer on the film that’s expected to resume production soon.
Production on “Rust” is due to resume this spring with a new cinematographer.