Prosecutors on Thursday charged “Rust” film armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed with tampering with evidence in relation to the shooting death of the movie’s director Halyna Hutchins, an amended complaint filed Thursday shows.
The charge is in addition to two counts of involuntary manslaughter filed against Gutierrez Reed earlier this year.
Gutierrez Reed transferred narcotics to another person “with the intent to prevent the apprehension, prosecution or conviction of herself,” the amended complaint says.
Gutierrez Reed was likely hungover when she loaded a prop gun used by actor Alec Baldwin that fired a live round of ammunition during a rehearsal, prosecutors alleged in a prior court filing CNN reported on last week.
Witnesses told investigators Gutierrez Reed “was drinking heavily and smoking marijuana in the evenings during the shooting of Rust,” the filing from prosecutors said.
In response to the amended complaint, Gutierrez Reed’s attorney, Jason Bowles said in his motion to dismiss he was inadvertently copied on an email from the prosecution’s lead investigator Robert Shilling that he was asked to do no further work on the case and included a comment that he has issues with how the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office handled the investigation.
Shilling wrote, “Knowing full well the probability that this email may be subject to IPRA (Inspection of Public Records Act), I am compelled to respectfully offer the following.”
“The conduct of the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office during and after their initial investigation is reprehensible and unprofessional to a degree I still have no words for,” he said in the email dated June 20. “Not I or 200 more proficient investigators than I can/could clean up the mess delivered to your office in October 2022 (1 year since the initial incident…inexcusable).”
The email was sent to Bowles in error, Special Prosecutor Kari Morrissey said in an email 38 minutes later. “It was an inadvertent disclosure. Please delete it,” she wrote.
Bowles then reached out to Shilling following the exchange, and Shilling said he was unable to discuss the case as he was under a nondisclosure agreement, the document says. As a result, Gutierrez Reed’s attorneys said they are requesting all emails between Shilling, the special prosecutors and First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies, saying they’ve “lost faith that the State will voluntarily comply with its Brady obligations,” under which prosecutors are required to share information with the defense.
“This request is also made because it appears that DA Carmack Altweis is still having involvement in the case, despite this Court’s unequivocal prior order,” Bowles alleges in the document.
Responding to a request for comment, Shilling wrote, “I must refer you to the special prosecutor’s office.”
CNN has also reached out to the First Judicial District Attorney special prosecutor’s office and the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s office for comment.
“It is shocking that after 20 months of investigation, the special prosecutor now throws in a completely new charge against Ms. Gutierrez Reed, with no prior notice or any witness statements, lab reports, or evidence to support it,” Bowles said in a statement responding to the new charge against his client. “This comes on the heels of the state letting its lead investigator go, and the investigator raising serious concerns about the investigation in an email. This stinks to high heaven and is retaliatory and vindictive.”
Involuntary manslaughter charges against Baldwin were dismissed in April due to “new facts” in the case, special prosecutors said, explaining at the time they could not “proceed under the current time constraints and on the facts and evidence turned over by law enforcement in its existing form.”