The “Rust” crew member who allegedly gave Alec Baldwin a propeller pistol that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins had previously been the subject of a security complaint.
Team member Maggie Goll said in a statement to The Associated Press that she filed an internal complaint with the executive producers of Hulu’s “Into the Dark” series in 2019 over concerns about the director’s behavior. Assistant Dave Halls on set. Goll said in an email on Sunday that Halls ignored safety protocols for weapons and fireworks and attempted to continue filming after a team member “slipped into a diabetic runaway” .
“He didn’t maintain a safe work environment,” Goll told NBC News. “The sets were almost always allowed to become more and more claustrophobic, no fire routes established, exits blocked… safety meetings were non-existent. “
On Thursday, Baldwin fired a gun on the set of the movie “Rust” in New Mexico, killing Halyna Hutchins, 42, and injuring director Joel Souza, who was standing behind her. Souza has since been released from a hospital. It has previously been reported that Halls handed the gun to Baldwin, mistakenly announcing at the time that it was a “cold weapon”, meaning it was a unloaded weapon. Instead, it was loaded with live bullets, according to records.
The weapon Baldwin used was one of three that a gun specialist, or gunsmith, had placed on a cart outside the building where a scene was rehearsed, according to court records. Halls grabbed a gun from a cart and handed it to Baldwin, records show.
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Baldwin, 63, known for his roles in “30 Rock” and “The Hunt for Red October” and his impression of former President Donald Trump on “Saturday Night Live,” broke his silence on Friday’s shooting, a day after the incident.
“There are no words to express my shock and sadness over the tragic accident that claimed the life of Halyna Hutchins, a deeply admired wife, mother and colleague,” Baldwin said on Twitter.
“I am fully cooperating with the police investigation to explain how this tragedy happened and I am in contact with her husband, offering my support to him and his family. My heart is broken for her husband, their son and everyone who knew him and I loved Halyna, ”the actor concluded.
Baldwin, who is a producer on “Rust,” met Hutchins’ husband and 9-year-old son on Saturday at a Santa Fe hotel where the actor stayed during filming. Baldwin and Hutchins’ husband can be seen kissing in a touching reunion.
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Goll, a props maker and licensed pyrotechnician, said in her email that Halls’ behavior on set had worried her in the past.
While working on “Into the Dark”, Halls did not hold safety meetings and consistently failed to announce the presence of a gun on set to the team, as is protocol. Goll said. The assistant prop master has repeatedly berated Halls for firing actors and actresses before they put the guns back on the prop table, she said.
“The only reason the crew were made aware of the presence of a weapon was because the assistant chief of props asked Dave to recognize and report the situation every day,” she wrote. .
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She filed an internal complaint with the executive producers of Blumhouse Productions, she said.
“To my knowledge, nothing was done after my complaints,” she wrote.
A spokesperson for Blumhouse Productions told NBC News, “We used non-firing dummy gun props during the production of ‘Pure’. No complaints were received through the EthicsPoint / Navex studio anonymous reporting system regarding security issues. “
“We cannot comment on personnel matters,” added the Blumhouse spokesperson regarding the allegations against Halls.
Fox News’ attempts to reach Halls were unsuccessful.
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“I am disgusted that I am not pushing harder for greater responsibility and safety,” Goll said. “Many of us have texted each other wondering the same thing: is there anything we could have done then that could have prevented the tragedy? It’s a horrible feeling. “
The Associated Press contributed to this report.