‘Rust’ Armorer, Assistant Director Under Scrutiny for What Led Up to Alec Baldwin Shooting Incident

According to a search warrant, assistant director Dave Halls “grabbed one of three ‘prop guns,’" and yelled “cold gun" before handing the weapon to Baldwin. Armorer and prop master Guillaume Deloche speaks with Inside Edition about gun safety on set.

As investigators piece together what led up to the fatal shooting on the set of “Rust” in New Mexico, the focus is intensifying on film’s armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, and assistant director Dave Halls.

Gutierrez-Reed, the 24-year-old in charge of overseeing all weapons on the set, is the daughter of Thell Reed, a well-known Hollywood armorer and stuntman.

Last month, in a podcast, she voiced concerns about whether she was ready to be the head armorer on a new Nicolas Cage western filmed last August. 

“I was really nervous about it at first, and I almost didn't take the job, because I wasn't sure if I was ready. But doing it, it went really smoothly,” Gutierrez-Reed said.

According to a search warrant, Halls, the assistant director, “grabbed one of three ‘prop guns,’” off a table set up by Gutierrez-Reed and yelled “cold gun."

Alec Baldwin was practicing a cross draw… when [the crew] heard what sounded like a whip and then loud pop,” the warrant continued.

Cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was fatally shot in the stomach. A script supervisor called 911 and immediately blamed Halls.

“This ******* A.D.,” she said. “He’s supposed to check the gun. He’s responsible for what happened.”

Calling out “cold gun” is a very specific term. It means there is no blank or bullet in the gun. While investigators are still piecing together the tragedy, it is clear the weapon used in the fatal shooting was not cold.

Armorer and property master Guillaume Deloche, who has 30 years in the film industry, spoke to Inside Edition about gun safety on set and showed the difference between blanks and real bullets. 

Blanks have color-coded tips, while a real bullet has a projectile at the tip. It’s standard protocol that a flashlight be used to ensure there are no projectiles stuck in the chamber, Deloche said. 

“You have to rotate all six chambers to visually inspect each one of them,” he said.

Another safety measure is taking a cleaning rod to make sure there are no obstructions in the barrel, according to Deloche. He also said that while on set, you should never point a gun at someone.

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