The Santa View District Attorney who charged Alec Baldwin with manslaughter for accidentally shooting Halena Hutchins has resigned from the case after a series of setbacks.
First District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altoys made a national name for herself when she fervently charged Baldwin with aggravated manslaughter for using a handgun in January, more than a year after the fatal shooting.
But today, she announced that she will be replaced by two local attorneys, Carey Morrissey and Jason Lewis.
Carmack Altoys said in a statement that she chose to step down in order to focus on other issues in the state.
Her departure comes as Baldwin has come under fire on social media for retweeting rock singer Peter Frampton’s gun control message.
Senior District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altoys announced today that she will be replaced by private prosecutors. Actor Alec Baldwin, right, has vowed to fight the charges
Carmack-Altwies announced manslaughter charges against Baldwin for the fatal shooting of Halena Hutchins in October (pictured in 2019).
Carmack-Altwies has spoken proudly in interviews about holding the actor to the same standards as everyone else.
“Nobody is above the law,” she has said repeatedly, telling FOX News in January: “Mr. Baldwin had a duty at the most basic level not to hold a gun fired and point it at a person while the trigger was pulled.
“But he also had a duty as an actor and producer on that set to examine or check the bullets himself to make sure they weren’t live.”
Earlier in her investigation, she also told Good Morning America There were “so many levels of failures” on the set of Rust prior to shooting in October that she was going to investigate because she was considering filing charges against the actor.
In addition to the involuntary manslaughter charge, Baldwin was also charged with aggravating a firearm, which could have landed him in prison for up to five years if he had been convicted.
But it wasn’t introduced into law until May 2022 — six months after Baldwin accidentally shot and killed Hutchins on set, and attorneys for Baldwin and gunsmith Hannah Gutierrez Reed have argued that the boost is unconstitutional.
They argued that at the time of Rust’s shooting, New Mexico law only allowed for three-year sentence bolstering for “brandishing” a firearm in a felony context—and the term “waving” was defined so narrowly as to require “the intent to intimidate or injure anyone.”
Under the new reinforcement, though, the term “waving” was changed to “use” as state lawmakers worked to toughen penalties for firearm-related crimes.
In the end, Carmack-Altweis decided to drop the reinforcement in the case – meaning Baldwin would face a maximum of 18 months behind bars if convicted of manslaughter.
A spokesperson for the attorney general’s office said in a statement at the time: ‘In order to avoid further judicial deviations by Mr. Baldwin and his attorneys, the attorney general and the special prosecutor have removed the firearm enhancement of the involuntary manslaughter charges in the death of Helena Hutchins on the set of Rust. .
“The prosecution’s priority is to secure justice, not to secure paid hours for big-city lawyers,” she added.
Baldwin was pictured on the set of Rust in New Mexico drawing his gun
The actor was sentenced for manslaughter. He is pictured here in police custody after the shooting
In her statement today, Carmack Altoys said she was stepping down to focus on other issues.
My responsibility to the residents of the First Judicial District is greater than to any one case, which is why I have chosen to appoint a special prosecutor for the Rost case.
“Carrie Morrissey and Jason Lewis will relentlessly pursue justice in the death of Helena Hutchins on behalf of the residents of the First Judicial Circuit,” she said.
A spokesperson for the attorney general also noted, “Carmack-Altoys will continue its record of prosecuting drunk drivers, cooperating with local law enforcement, increasing diversion efforts and securing convictions against the most serious and prolific offenders.”
With the announcement, Carmack-Altweis is now the second prosecutor to step down from the case after special prosecutor Andrea Repp stepped down earlier in the year.
Baldwin’s team had complained about the fact that she was acting as a prosecutor in his case and running as a Republican for a seat in the New Mexico House of Representatives.
Later, emails surfaced saying that working on the case would help her political campaign.
“At some point, I’d like to at least get out there to help you… because it might help with my campaign lol,” she told Carmack Altoys in an email.
She resigned in March, saying: ‘It has become clear that the best way I can ensure justice is done in this case is to step down, so that the prosecution can. Focus can be made on the evidence and facts, which clearly show a complete disregard for basic safety protocols that led to the death of Helena Hutchins.
“I will not allow questions about my work as a legislator and attorney general to overshadow the real issue at hand.”