Ammunition Supplier Testifies in “Rust” Trial: Only Inert Rounds Provided despite Handling Live Rounds from Another Production

SANTA FE, N.M. – Testifying at the trial of “Rust” movie armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, ammunition supplier Seth Kenney stated that he only provided inert dummy rounds to the production where actor Alec Baldwin fatally shot cinematographer Halyna Hutchins in 2021. However, Kenney admitted to also handling live rounds from another production during that time.

Kenney informed the jury that he cleaned and repackaged ammunition for “Rust” that had previously been used on a production in Texas. He handed off a box of 50 inert dummy rounds with no gunpowder to the props supervisor for “Rust” on Oct. 12, 2021. Additionally, he ensured the dummy rounds were safely prepared by cleaning the exterior and removing residue from inside.

The trial’s outcome may pivot on determining the source of six live rounds found on the “Rust” set, one of which was fired by Baldwin. It is important to note that live ammunition is strictly prohibited on movie sets according to industry and union guidelines.

Prosecutors hold Gutierrez-Reed accountable for unknowingly bringing live ammunition to the set and neglecting basic safety protocols for handling weapons. On the other hand, the defense argues that she is being unfairly blamed for issues beyond her control, including Baldwin’s actions with the weapon.

In a separate case, Baldwin, indicted on an involuntary manslaughter charge in connection to Hutchins’ death, has pleaded not guilty with his trial set for July. During Monday’s testimony, Kenney revealed that he provided dummy ammunition to the “Rust” props master, emphasizing that he did not supply live ammunition.

Moreover, Kenney acknowledged storing live rounds used for an exercise with actors on another production at a ranch owned by Taylor Sheridan. The live rounds were initially provided to that production by Gutierrez-Reed’s step-father, Thell Reed, a Hollywood sharpshooter and weapons consultant.

As the trial progresses, details regarding Gutierrez-Reed’s performance on set and a tampering charge she faces are being examined closely. Allegations suggest that she handed a small bag of possible narcotics to another crew member after the shooting to avoid detection.

The testimony sheds light on the events leading up to the tragic incident on the “Rust” set, underlining the complexities and responsibilities involved in ensuring on-set safety.