Legal Experts: Alec Baldwin’s Interview About Shooting ‘A Mistake’

Legal Experts: Alec Baldwin’s Interview About Shooting ‘A Mistake’
Actor Alec Baldwin attends the 2019 PEN America Literary Gala at the American Museum of Natural History in New York on May 21, 2019. (Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
Jack Phillips

Some legal experts said Alec Baldwin’s Thursday interview with ABC News could be used against him and “was a mistake.”

During the interview with George Stephanopoulos, Baldwin spoke about the October shooting incident that left the “Rust” photo director, Halyna Hutchins, dead. Authorities in Santa Fe, New Mexico, said that Baldwin accidentally discharged the firearm, although charges have not been ruled out in the case.

“Someone put a live bullet in a gun, a bullet that wasn’t even supposed to be on the property,” Baldwin claimed during the interview. “Someone is ​responsible for what happened, and I can’t say who that is, but I know it’s not me.”

The 63-year-old actor then alleged that he didn’t pull the trigger, suggesting that the gun was accidentally discharged, although firearms experts have said such a scenario is exceedingly rare.

“The trigger wasn’t pulled. I didn’t pull the trigger,” Baldwin said. When asked about whether he pulled the trigger, Baldwin said, “No, no, no, no, no ... I would never point a gun at anyone and pull a trigger at them.”

But Rachel Fiset, a partner at the Los Angeles-based Zweiback, Fiset & Coleman, said that Baldwin’s comments during the interview could be used against him by prosecutors if he’s charged or in a civil lawsuit.

“Alec Baldwin is clearly devastated by the tragic accidental killing of Ms. Hutchins,” Fiset told Fox News. “He likely feels compelled to speak publicly as a result, and he is sympathetic at times as it relates to the trauma he is experiencing.”

With the ABC News interview, Baldwin, she added, is now “trying to direct the narrative in a way that shifts blame for this tragedy away from him. [However], it is never a good idea to speak publicly during an active investigation and this case is no different.”

“Any statements made on television during an investigation could result in unintended admissions that could be used against him later at trial or could prejudice the prosecutor against him,” Fiset continued.

Former assistant U.S. attorney Neama Rahmani, the head of Los Angeles-based West Coast Trial Lawyers, said Baldwin make “a mistake.”

“From a legal perspective, Baldwin’s interview was a mistake,” Rahmani noted. “His statements can and will be used against him in the civil lawsuits and any potential criminal prosecution. And Baldwin’s attorneys can’t use the interview to help him because his answers are hearsay. At best, the interview was a calculated public relations move that may backfire.”

A representative for Baldwin hasn’t returned a request for comment.

Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter with 15 years experience who started as a local New York City reporter. Having joined The Epoch Times' news team in 2009, Jack was born and raised near Modesto in California's Central Valley. Follow him on X:
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