An attorney for the armorer who monitored guns used on the "Rust" film set alleged Wednesday that someone purposefully slipped a live shell into the rifle used by Alec Baldwin when he inadvertently shot dead a cameraman.
According to Jason Bowles, his client, Hannah Gutierrez, took ammunition from a box she thought contained just fake bullets that couldn't be fired. He speculated that genuine bullets, which resemble dummies, may have been purposefully put in the box.
"We're afraid that could have been what happened here, that somebody intended to sabotage this set with a live round intentionally placed in a box of dummies," Bowles said on ABC television's "Good Morning America."
"We're not saying anybody had any intent there was going to be a tragedy of homicide," he added, "but they wanted to do something to cause a safety incident on set. That's what we believe happened."
Rust Movie Productions' representative had no response on Bowles' allegations. The firm has stated that it is investigating the event and that no official complaints concerning safety on the site in Santa Fe, New Mexico have been received.
The incident is being investigated by local authorities, and no charges have been brought against anybody involved.
Halyna Hutchins, a cinematographer, was murdered on Oct. 21 when a pistol Baldwin was carrying discharged a live bullet, according to authorities. Assistant director Dave Halls informed Baldwin that the pistol was "cold," an industry phrase indicating that it was safe to use.
Bowles stated that Gutierrez had examined the gun before handing it over to Halls. He stated she spun the cylinder and showed him each of the rounds, which she thought were six fake bullets. The pistol was then taken by Halls inside the church where Baldwin was practicing a scene.
According to Santa Fe officials, camera operators left the film before the filming to protest what they called lengthy hours and other unfavorable working conditions.
When asked who would purposely mix real ammo with fake bullets, Bowles told NBC's "Today" show that it may be someone trying "to prove a point, to indicate that they're angry, they're upset."