Alec Baldwin scores legal win in 'Rust' shooting case as firearm enhancement charge is dropped
If convicted on the dropped charge, Baldwin would have faced a mandatory five years in prison.
Actor Alec Baldwin scored a legal victory in the "Rust" fatal shooting case after prosecutors dropped the firearm enhancement charge originally filed against Baldwin, according to documents obtained by Fox News.
The office of First Judicial District Attorney Mary Carmack-Altwies filed manslaughter charges against Baldwin in late January over the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, whom Baldwin shot on set.
"In order to avoid further litigious distractions by Mr. Baldwin and his attorneys, the District Attorney and the special prosecutor have removed the firearm enhancement to the involuntary manslaughter charges in the death of Halyna Hutchins on the 'Rust' film set," Heather Brewer, spokesperson for the district attorney, told Fox News Digital in a statement. "The prosecution's priority is securing justice, not securing billable hours for big-city attorneys."
If convicted on the now-dropped charge, Baldwin would have faced a mandatory five years in prison. He currently faces a maximum of 18 months.
Former federal prosecutor Neama Rahmani told Fox the DA should be embarrassed.
"The district attorney has to be embarrassed," he said. "Charging a law retroactively is a constitutional violation and something that every first-year law student knows not to do.
"Now, she has egg on her face after overcharging the case and grandstanding for the press. She has made one legal blunder after another and may be in over her head. There is no reason why she should have waited more than a year to file charges or give assistant director David Halls a no-time slap on the wrist when she is trying to put Baldwin in state prison."
Attorneys for Baldwin argued that the enhancement was "unconstitutional" in a Feb. 10 filing.