New Mexico prosecutors on Thursday announced plans to charge actor Alec Baldwin and armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed with two counts each of involuntary manslaughter in the fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the film "Rust."

In a news release, prosecutors stated that they will file the criminal charges before the end of the month. First assistant director David Halls signed a plea deal for the charge of negligent use of a deadly weapon.

The October 2021 shooting occurred inside a church building on Santa Fe's Bonanza Creek Ranch, where Baldwin was rehearsing a scene with Hutchins and director Joel Souza. Baldwin, who was sitting on a wooden pew, fatally shot Hutchins after discharging a prop firearm. The 42-year-old cinematographer was taken by helicopter to an Albuquerque hospital and pronounced dead. Souza was injured in the shooting and released from a hospital soon afterward.

The ensuing investigation captivated and disturbed the public, exploring how a loaded firearm might have wound up on a film set. Affidavits alleged that Gutierrez-Reed, the then-24-year-old armorer tasked with safely handling all firearms on set, believed the gun in question, a .45 Long Colt revolver, to have been loaded with dummy rounds. Hall retrieved it from the cart where Gutierrez-Reed left it and called out "cold gun" to indicate it did not contain any live rounds, then handed it to Baldwin for the scene.

Prop master Sarah Zachry told Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office detectives she checked the box of ammunition after the incident and "found some of the cartridges would rattle, which signified them being 'dummy rounds,' [while] others did not rattle."

Gutierrez-Reed said she was not allowed to enter the building because of coronavirus protocols and heard the firearm discharge from outside. After the shooting, her attorneys suggested the sheriff's office look into Seth Kenney, the businessman who supplied the production with prop weapons and ammo.

That December, less than two months after the incident, Alec Baldwin told ABC News's George Stephanopoulos that he did not pull the trigger on the firearm: "I would never point a gun at anyone and pull a trigger at them," he said. The actor, who also served as a producer on the film, stated that "someone put a live bullet in a gun, a bullet that wasn't even supposed to be on the property."

The charges were announced in a statement released Thursday morning. Neither Mary Carmack-Altwies, the district attorney serving the Santa Fe area, nor special prosecutor Andrea Reeb plan to hold news conferences or public appearances regarding the matter.

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