DA in Rust Case Steps Aside

Santa Fe prosecutor said she couldn't continue without 'extra manpower'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 15, 2023 12:55 AM CDT
Updated Mar 29, 2023 6:23 PM CDT
Another Win for Alec Baldwin in Rust Case
In this 2022 image from video released by the Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office, Alec Baldwin stands in costume and speaks with investigators following a fatal shooting on a movie set in Santa Fe, NM.   (Santa Fe County Sheriff's Office via AP, File)
UPDATE Mar 29, 2023 6:23 PM CDT

Santa Fe District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies has stepped aside from the Rust prosecution after a series of setbacks and has named two lawyers to take over as special prosecutors, Variety reports. Earlier this month, special prosecutor Andrea Reeb stepped down from the prosecution of Alec Baldwin and armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed for involuntary manslaughter. On Monday, the DA told a judge she needed "extra manpower," but a lawyer for Gutierrez-Reed said the law would require Carmack-Altwies to step down if she brought in a new special prosecutors, reports the New York Times. The new special prosecutors, Kari Morrissey and Jason Lewis, will need to get up to speed before a preliminary hearing starts on May 3, Variety reports.

Mar 15, 2023 12:55 AM CDT

The New Mexico special prosecutor in the fatal shooting on the set of Rust abruptly stepped down Tuesday. Andrea Reeb, who is also a state representative, said in a statement that after "much reflection ... it has become clear that the best way I can ensure justice is served in this case is to step down so that the prosecution can focus on the evidence and the facts." Lawyers for Alec Baldwin, who is charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, had last month argued that Reeb's position as special prosecutor violated the state constitution's separation-of-powers provision, NBC News reports.

Reeb referred to those allegations in her statement, the AP reports: On Oct. 21, 2021, Baldwin showed "complete disregard for basic protocols," Reeb said. "I will not allow questions about my serving as a legislator and prosecutor to cloud the real issue at hand.” It's not clear whether another special prosecutor will be appointed. Baldwin and weapons supervisor Hannah Gutierrez-Reed both pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter charges. Assistant director David Halls has, according to prosecutors, signed an agreement to plead guilty to negligent use of a deadly weapon. This is Baldwin's second legal win in the case, after a "gun enhancement" charge against him was dropped last month. (More Alec Baldwin stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.