Categories: US

Judge may throw out some claims against Alec Baldwin’s production company in the Rust lawsuit

A judge said in a written preliminary ruling today that he is ready to suspend some claims in a lawsuit brought by the script supervisor for the film Rust against Alec Baldwin’s production company over the accidental shooting of two crew members – but not the causes of action against Baldwin himself.

Los Angeles Superior Court judge Michael Whitaker also said he is inclined to dismiss a defense motion to challenge Mamie Mitchell’s claim for punitive damages against the 64-year-old artist and his company, El Dorado Pictures Inc.

However, Baldwin’s motion to be dropped from the civil suit was rejected by the script supervisor, meaning Mitchell can proceed with her lawsuit against the 68-year-old actor over the fatal shooting.

Mitchell claims she was nearby when Baldwin accidentally shot cameraman Halyna Hutchins and injured the film’s director, Joel Souza.

The lawsuit seeks compensation for physical and emotional damage allegedly suffered by the staffer as a result of the incident, which occurred on October 21, 2021, at a replica church on the Western set in New Mexico.

A judge said he will likely throw some claims in a lawsuit filed by the script supervisor for the movie Rust against Alec Baldwin’s production company, but not the causes of the action against the actor himself, seen here on the movie Santa Fe. that takes place shortly after the incident. last year

The lawsuit seeks compensation for physical and emotional damage allegedly suffered by the staffer as a result of the incident, which occurred on October 21, 2021, at a replica church on the Western set in New Mexico. The church where the deadly shooting took place in Santa Fe

The judge was scheduled to hear arguments later Tuesday before making his final ruling, setting out Mitchell’s allegations of assault, willful infliction of emotional distress and negligence against Baldwin, who also served as one of the film’s executive producers. .

The verdict comes after Mitchell fell last month some claims in her lawsuit against the film’s producers, including Baldwin, cause action for assault, assault, and intentional infliction of emotional distress, leaving a sole claim for negligence.

During Tuesday’s proceedings, Whitaker revealed that he is leaning towards rejecting Mitchell’s attack and deliberately inflicting emergency emotional claims against El Dorado, but not Baldwin.

However, he did allow the plaintiff to proceed with a negligence claim against both parties, alleging that Baldwin “recklessly” fired the prop gun that killed cameraman Hutchins – an incident for which the studio was also liable.

The judge is inclined to dismiss a defense motion to dismiss Mamie Mitchell’s claim for punitive damages against the 64-year-old artist and his firm, El Dorado Pictures Inc.

In response to Baldwin’s motion to suspend Mitchell’s compensation claim, the judge said the plaintiff alleges that the ammunition, including the gun fired by Baldwin, had been regularly left unattended during the shooting prior to the incident, and that loaded firearms had been used by crew members for target practice by crew members against safety protocols.

The judge also noted that Mitchell alleges that Baldwin and El Dorado “deliberately implemented a low-budget and cost-effective plan that was known to create unsafe conditions for film production crews, which led (the defendants) to follow basic safety protocols regarding the hazardous use.” of firearms.’

Halyna Hutchins was fatally shot on the set of the film on October 21

Mitchell lives in New Mexico and the events took place there, so her arguments are made under that state’s laws.

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Lawyers for Baldwin and El Dorado filed court documents on Sept. 2 requesting that their clients be dismissed as defendants in the most recent version of Mitchell’s lawsuit filed Aug. 3.

The attorneys also argue that California law governs the issue of punitive damages and that they should be dropped from Mitchell’s case, alleging that she did not display any intentional or despicable conduct on the part of Baldwin.

Baldwin/El Dorado’s attorneys further state in their pleadings that Mitchell does not explain how the actor, his company, or any of the other defendants had a duty of care to her that caused them to be negligent.

The gun Baldwin was holding “accidentally and unexpectedly fired a live round, injuring director Joel Souza and leading to the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins,” Baldwin/El Dorado’s attorneys claim in their court papers.

The investigation into Hutchins’ death took a whole year.

Baldwin and Hutchins on the set of Rust last year. He insists he never pulled the trigger

During that time, several lawsuits were filed in civil court, including one filed by Hutchins’ widower, against Baldwin and the rest of the production.

He sued them for wrongful death, but they settled out of court for an undisclosed amount.

Matthew will now be a producer on the film once production resumes.

Baldwin is not the only person in the frame.

Among others blamed for the shooting are gun master Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, who Baldwin says failed to properly check the gun, and assistant director Dave Halls.

By the time Halyna was murdered, many of the film crews had walked out of the set in protest at the set’s terms and payment.

Baldwin served as producer and lead actor in the film.

Baldwin is shown in tears after an interview at the Sante Fe County Sheriff’s Office on Oct. 21

On the anniversary of Hutchins’ death last week, the DA warned everyone involved.

“On the anniversary of the tragedy on the Rust movie set in Santa Fe County, District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altweis remains committed to bringing justice to the victims and getting answers for the community.

“Once the District Attorney has received the full report from the Santa Fe County Sheriff, she and her team of professional attorneys and investigators will thoroughly review all of the evidence and make an informed decision about whether or not to press charges against those involved.” .

“No one is above the law and every victim deserves justice,” she warned.


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